**MEDIA ADVISORY FOR TOMORROW, TUESDAY APRIL 27, 8:30AM**: New York State Nurses Association demands immediate action after Albany Medical Center proposes further cuts to staffing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 26, 2021
Contact: Carl Ginsburg | carl.ginsburg@nysna.org | 917.405.1060

Call To Action Comes On the Heels of The New York State Legislature Pushing a Safe Staffing Bill

Albany Medical Center Proposed the Cuts after Nurses Worked Day and Night for Patients and the Community, Especially During the COVID Pandemic

“We cannot promise our patients safe conditions,” say nurses at Albany Medical Center, as understaffing of RNs continues; experienced nurses are leaving in droves for other hospitals

Albany - Albany Medical Center is in what some are calling a “meltdown,” as experienced nurses are leaving in droves – as one nurse described it: “they are running out the door.” Poor staffing levels — not enough nurses to do their jobs professionally — is the word from nurses in many units across the hospital. The downward spiral of staffing levels, state intervention at an Oncology Unit overrun by the COVID-19 virus, filings with OSHA and the NLRB, and poor sanitary conditions have undone any remaining confidence in the institution that dates back 170 years.

WHO: Nurses of the New York State Nurses Association from units across Albany Medical Center
WHAT: Speak Out and Press Conference on declining conditions at the hospital
WHERE: 62 New Scotland Ave., Albany, NY 12208 (across the street from hospital)
WHEN: Tuesday, April 27 at 8:30 AM

These nurses and others will be speaking out and be available for interview:

“There are not enough skilled nurses working in Labor & Delivery. Watching my unit struggle to provide care for mothers and newborns is very upsetting. The understaffing has gotten so bad that long-time, devoted nurses are leaving — they are running out the door. In my 26 years working as a nurse, I have never seen it so bad. Today we simply cannot promise patients the safety they should have." - Kathryn Dupuis, RN, Labor & Delivery

"I have worked as a nurse for 18 years, 7 of them at AMC. I am in the adult ICU working nights. Staffing is a serious issue because at times we are caring for patients with the highest acuities, such as continuous dialysis at the bedside. Management needs to recognize what we do for 12 hours a day. Other hospitals have a hotline for nurses, here we have no breaks! Nurses are leaving because they are not respected or appreciated. And some of the traveling nurses have dubious ICU training." - Sandra Baldeo, RN, CCU
 
“I work in infectious disease. A few weeks ago, we had two of us and three agency nurses during my shift. These nurses are not familiar with our systems and policies and procedures, such as operating a PCA pump or what's our procedure for blood transfusion. They are not vested in our house; their plan is to move on when they have served their time. The solution to a severe understaffing of RNs is not to hire outside traveling nurses. They come and go, and we have to precept a new travel nurse every time one leaves and another takes their place. This practice diminishes the quality of care we can provide our patients. When they've completed their contracts, they move on to a different hospital because conditions at AMC do not inspire them to want to become permanent staff." - Tonia Bazel, RN, Infectious Diseases

"I have been a nurse for 25 years. In the cardiac intensive care unit, we care for ill to very ill patients. We should never have more than two patients per nurse. Just last week 6 RNs were assigned 17 patients. That's a very unsafe situation. Management refuses to staff with enough nurses. That's why nurses are leaving.” - Marina Verba, RN, CCU

In the Legislature, votes are anticipated on a staffing bill in both Houses that will help save lives as we emerge from this terrible pandemic. Unsafe staffing levels must be corrected for the sake of the public’s health.

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The New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA) represents more than 42,000 members in New York State. We are New York’s largest union and professional association for registered nurses. For more information, please visit nysna.org.
 

About NYSNA

We are 42,000 nurses working together to win safe staffing, keep hospitals open for care, stop the Wall Street attack on our patients, and win healthcare for all.