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Debt Collector Is Faulted for Tough Tactics in Hospitals

Debt Collector Is Faulted for Tough Tactics in Hospitals

Hospital patients waiting in the emergency room or convalescing after surgery could find themselves confronted by an unexpected visitor: a debt collector at bedside. —New York Times, 04/24/12 More »

S.F. Hospital Deal Could Raise Health Care Costs

S.F. Hospital Deal Could Raise Health Care Costs

While the mayor has lauded the complex, 229-page agreement as a jobs generator that will bring the city's hospital network into the 21st century, the deal has raised concerns about how much of the $2.5 billion construction project will be passed on to consumers. More »

One in four Americans without health coverage: study

One in four Americans without health coverage: study

As the U.S. Supreme Court ponders the fate of healthcare reform in the current election year, a study released on Thursday shows that one in four working-age Americans went without insurance at some point in 2011, often as a result of unemployment and other job changes. —Reuters, 04/19/12 More »

Kaiser Nurses Protest Plans to Close Hayward Pediatric Unit

Kaiser Nurses Protest Plans to Close Hayward Pediatric Unit

Nurses in Hayward are protesting plans to close a Kaiser Permanente inpatient pediatric unit. Listen to the audio clip that aired this morning: —KQED - NPR, 04/18/12 More »

Nurses Say Kaiser Will Make Kids Drive Too Far For Hospital Care

Nurses Say Kaiser Will Make Kids Drive Too Far For Hospital Care

Protestors in Hayward say that when a pediatric hospital wing in that city is closed in 2014, a new kid's hospital unit should be opened in San Leandro. —Union City Patch , 04/18/12 More »

Palomar Health Chief Exec’s Wages Land At No. 2 In State

Palomar Health Chief Exec’s Wages Land At No. 2 In State

DeAnn McEwen, co-president of the California Nurses Association, said the district has laid off workers and pushed back the opening of clinics in Ramona and Valley Center. “To support that kind of salary, I think it’s unconscionable,” McEwen said. “They are holding back on what the voters are paying for.” More »

SMC, NLRB dispute continues

SMC, NLRB dispute continues

Nurses and union officials claim that St. Mary-Corwin Medical Center has violated a days-old agreement to stop activities cited in a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board, so the complaints have been reinstated. —The Pueblo Chieftain, 04/09/12 More »

Supreme Court Judges Have Access to Guaranteed Care, Shouldn’t You?

Supreme Court Judges Have Access to Guaranteed Care, Shouldn’t You?

Justices Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Stephen Breyer did not have much in common during the three days of debate on the 2010 healthcare law before the Supreme Court March 26-28. But they did share one essential characteristic. All four will never have to worry about guaranteed access to healthcare. —Commentary by Rose Ann DeMoro, published by Common Dreams, 03/30/12 More »

Health Care Jujitsu

Health Care Jujitsu

Not surprisingly, today's debut Supreme Court argument over the so-called "individual mandate" requiring everyone to buy health insurance revolved around epistemological niceties such as the meaning of a "tax," and the question of whether the issue is ripe for review. —Huffington Post, 03/27/12 More »

An emergency room story to make anyone ill

An emergency room story to make anyone ill

The tale of an 11-year-old's $5,000 stomachache reveals the Twilight Zone of hospital billing. The charges seem arbitrary if not indefensible. —Los Angeles Times, 03/24/12 More »

Taunton Hospital Closure Plans Stirring Fierce Battle on Beacon Hill

Taunton Hospital Closure Plans Stirring Fierce Battle on Beacon Hill

STATE HOUSE, BOSTON A member of Senate President Therese Murray’s leadership team predicted Thursday that the Senate would support blocking a Patrick administration move to shutter Taunton State Hospital, a mental health facility that serves the state’s southeast region. More »

Nurses Deliver Petition; Demand Safe Care for Muskegon Area Patients

Nurses Deliver Petition; Demand Safe Care for Muskegon Area Patients

MUSKEGON – Registered nurses from Mercy Health Partners’ Hackley campus delivered a 6 foot high petition today to the office of Roger W. Spoelman, President and CEO of the health system. The petition boasted hundreds of signatures from Hackley nurses requesting safe care for their patients. More »

Nurses say they’re forced to work OT

Nurses say they’re forced to work OT

Mandatory overtime was a common complaint among Texas nurses a few years ago. They said that being required to tack on extra hours or shifts left many of them exhausted, contributed to errors and accidents and made family responsibilities difficult. More »

Hundreds of Michigan Nurses March on Capitol to Advocate for Patients, Communities

Hundreds of Michigan Nurses March on Capitol to Advocate for Patients, Communities

LANSING – More than 500 nurses and nursing students from across Michigan rallied at the Capitol today, advocating for policies and priorities to heal their patients and communities. This year’s event focused on the introduction of the Safe Patient Care Act, long-overdue legislation to require Michigan hospitals to provide minimal nursing staff in order to protect patients’ care and safety. More »

Minnesota Right to Work Update

Minnesota Right to Work Update

Nurses in Minnesota are fighting against an irresponsible ‘Right to Work’ amendment that would make it more difficult for RNs to bargain for safe staffing levels, for construction workers to ensure safe worksites and for emergency responders, like police and firefighters, to negotiate for things that keep us all safe—like faster response times and life-saving emergency equipment. More »

Chefs, Butlers, Marble Baths: Hospitals Vie for the Affluent

Chefs, Butlers, Marble Baths: Hospitals Vie for the Affluent

The feverish patient had spent hours in a crowded emergency room. When she opened her eyes in her Manhattan hospital room last winter, she recalled later, she wondered if she could be hallucinating: “This is like the Four Seasons — where am I?” —New York Times, 03/06/12 More »

Unions, workers launch ballot drive to protect collective bargaining

Unions, workers launch ballot drive to protect collective bargaining

Nurses, teachers, construction workers and others gathered at the Michigan state Capitol Tuesday to launch their drive to enshrine collective bargaining as a right guaranteed to employees under the Michigan Constitution. —mLIVE, 03/06/12 More »

Unpaid medical bills can drag down credit

Unpaid medical bills can drag down credit

Your credit can be wrecked if the doctor or hospital kicks your unpaid bill to a collection agency. 22 million Americans were contacted by collection agencies for unpaid medical bills in 2005. That increased to 30 million Americans in 2010. People with wrecked credit scores include those who were just trying to resolve a dispute with their insurance company. It includes people owing less than $250. And even after the bill is paid, the record of the collection action can stay on a credit report for up to seven years. That can drag down a credit score and drive up the cost of financing a home. —SFGate, 03/05/12 More »

Maternal Mortality Rates Rising in California

Maternal Mortality Rates Rising in California

It is something we take for granted in the United States. A woman enters the hospital to give birth and she emerges a couple of days later with a beautiful bundle of joy. That is how it usually goes. But this story is about the rare exception -- women who die within 42 days of childbirth. In the health care community it's called simply "maternal mortality." And in the U.S., many experts believe it is on the rise. —ABC News, 03/04/12 More »

Survey Shows Americans Pay a Lot More For Health Care

Survey Shows Americans Pay a Lot More For Health Care

Americans spend more than people in other countries on just about every medical procedure and doctor visit, according to a new report from the International Federation of Health Plans ww.ifhp.com. —National Journal, 03/04/12 More »

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