Letter: Nevada nurses need respect
To the editor:
“Nevada is not the place you want to get sick,” “Nevada has the worst nurse-to-population ratio in the nation,” “It’s dangerous to care for too many patients. It’s an unsafe situation.” Reno Gazette-Journal, March 5.
With the nursing shortage being recognized by the health care professionals across the nation, it would be reasonable to think that more value would be placed on the Nevada nurse.
Washoe Medical Center (WMC) states that they are committed to customer satisfaction. As nurses, we are committed to giving our patients the best possible care. But how can this be accomplished with the staffing shortage that occurs on a daily basis?
WMC nurses are attempting to rectify the nursing shortage by unifying and unionizing. The hope is to improve working conditions, which will give us the ability to provide better patient care.
To date, WMC and nurses have had 28 negotiation sessions in which WMC has used every stall tactic possible, which included having to leave early for something more important, to being only interested in setting a date for the next session, which turns out to be a difficult task as the primary WMC arbitrators do not have their calendar available (lawyers don’t carry day planners?).
Wake up, Nevada. Offering only education is a start, but retention is the key.
People will not enter or remain in a profession with such high demands for current minimal compensation.
Nurses need respect, benefits and appropriate salaries. Washoe Medical Center, stay at the table and deal respectfully and realistically with us, so that we might provide optimum care to this community.
Faye Wilkes, R.N.
Sun Valley, Nev.
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