US Nurses At For-Profit Hospital Chain To Strike Over Cuts And PPE Shortages

Nurses and support staff at HCA Healthcare, the largest for-profit hospital chain in the U.S., plan to strike Friday in protest over cuts and concessions the corporation is pushing on front-line health care workers as the coronavirus continues to spread nationwide.

The Guardian and KHN have so far identified reports of 679 front-line health care workers who have died of COVID-19 in the U.S. amid continuing reports of long hours and shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE).

Erin McIntosh, a nurse in the code blue/rapid response department at the HCA-owned Riverside Community Hospital in Riverside, California, for six years, is one of around 1,000 nurses represented by SEIU Local 121RN planning to strike in protest of hospital understaffing during the pandemic, which they say violates California’s nurse-to-patient ratio laws.

“HCA has continuously not upheld their end of the mediation agreement of our nurses staying in ratio,” said McIntosh. The agreement

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Wealthy Hospital Taps Small Craft Breweries For Financial Aid To Buy Masks, Gloves

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — As Inova Health System sought donations in March to buy personal protective equipment for its staff to treat COVID-19, Zach Mote, a police officer turned brewer, came to their aid.

Even though his Water’s End Brewery taproom in this Washington, D.C., suburb had been forced to close, he enlisted the help of nearby Beltway Brewing to make a new ale, PPE beer. They’ve donated the more than $18,000 from its sales to the hospital system to help buy masks, gloves and other personal protective equipment.

Inova, which serves some of Washington’s wealthiest suburbs, told bondholders last year that it had $3.1 billion in investments it could liquidate in three days. It has received more than $144 million in advanced Medicare payments and $49 million in other federal coronavirus assistance.

As of early June, Inova has raised

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At-Home Care Designed For COVID Likely Here To Stay At Cleveland Hospital

CLEVELAND, Ohio — In late March, Andrea Laquatra began to feel sick. At first, it was an overwhelming fatigue, and the 32-year-old Cleveland mother of two tried to push through it.

A fever, headaches and body aches soon followed. Then she noticed she’d lost her senses of taste and smell.

By March 23, Laquatra could no longer deny the nagging fear she’d had since first falling ill: She might have COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, which by then had been detected in every state. That day, 351 new cases, 83 hospitalizations and three deaths were reported in Ohio.

The phone call Laquatra made next, to a COVID-19 hotline staffed by the area’s public health system, MetroHealth, likely helped contain the spread of her illness to only her husband, Tony.

Andrea Laquatra called MetroHealth Medical Center’s COVID-19 hotline in Cleveland after exhibiting symptoms of the coronavirus. The

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Hospital Workers Complain of Minimal Disclosure After COVID Exposures

Dinah Jimenez assumed a world-class hospital would be better prepared than a chowder house to inform workers when they had been exposed to a deadly virus.

So, when her boyfriend, an employee of a popular seafood restaurant in Seattle, received a call from his boss on a Sunday in late March telling him a co-worker had tested positive for COVID-19 and that he needed to quarantine for 14 days, she said she assumed she’d get a similar call from the University of Washington Medical Center. After all, the infected restaurant employee worked a second job alongside her at the hospital’s Plaza Cafe.

That call never came, she said.

Jimenez, 42, said she returned to her job as a cashier at the hospital cafeteria two days later, and “it was like nothing had happened. They didn’t say anything.” She said the infected worker, a fellow cashier, was stationed just 2 feet

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