Union employees speak out against Lifespan, Care New England merger

Rhode Island held its first public access meeting Jan. 20 about the Lifespan and Care New England merger, where several union employees from the Providence-based health systems spoke out against the proposed deal, The Boston Globe reported Jan. 20.

The merger application went public this month and has received some scrutiny from state regulators.

Sarah Gello Weinreich, RN, a nurse at Butler and Bradley hospitals, said she is concerned that some services will be cut, the Globe reported.

"As a mother and a caregiver, I'm here to make sure that we do better by our children," she said. "We need more capacity, more resilience, and [to] expand access. Not less."

Frank Savoretti, MD, a primary care physician, voiced concerns about how the deal would affect his career, ABC 6 reported.

"It would take very little for them to create a situation that would put me out of practice," he said.

There are individuals who support the merger, however, such as Timothee Babineau, MD, of Rhode Island Hospital, according to ABC 6.

"My ethics as a doctor would not allow for me to advocate for this merger as strongly as I am advocating for it if I thought in any way it would do harm," he said.

James Fanale, MD, CEO and president of Care New England, also said he backs the deal to improve healthcare in Rhode Island, according to ABC 6.

"This is all about coming together to ensure that we can deliver great quality healthcare to the citizens of Rhode Island," he said.

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