North Carolina nurses rally over patient safety concerns

Nurses are rallying at Asheville, N.C.-based Mission Hospital over patient safety concerns, nurses being sent home, and unsafe working conditions, Fox affiliate WHNS reported April 10.

National Nurses Organizing Committee/National Nurses United said nurses at the hospital are reporting long patient wait times, broken hospital equipment and unsafe staffing levels. One nurse also claimed her colleagues are being sent home.

"As an emergency room nurse, it is unacceptable to have patients waiting more than 12 hours to receive care," Hannah Drummond, RN, who works in the emergency department at Mission Hospital, told WHNS. "Instead of increasing staffing in the emergency department to reduce wait times, HCA cut staff and sent nurses home. This is unconscionable."

Nancy Lindell, a spokesperson for Nashville, Tenn.-based HCA, told Becker's, "Despite the union's endless allegations, there has not been any finding that Mission Hospital has violated their contract in any way, including how we assign RNs to provide safe, appropriate patient care. …While facing a national shortage of healthcare workers, Mission Health is continuing to recruit team members and, in the last two weeks, has hired more than 100 colleagues. We have more nurses working in the hospital now than we did a year ago at this time. We offer shift incentives and are building our talent pipeline through our relationship with our local education partners, our own get-paid-to-learn CNA program and the recent opening of the Galen College of Nursing. Mission Health also made a $20 million annual investment in salary increases for direct patient care staff."

HCA owns and operates Mission Health.

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