Press Release

Citing Turnover, Nurses Urge HCA-Affiliated, Central Florida Regional Hospital, to Invest in RN Staff and Patient Care

Florida RNs Put Patients First

Informational Picket – Tuesday, July 24, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Registered nurses at HCA-affiliated Central Florida Regional Hospital (CFRH) in Sanford will hold an informational picket July 24, urging hospital management to address RN turnover rates and consistently comply with staffing grids. This will improve the recruitment and retention of experienced RNs, and ensure optimal patient care, say nurses.

What: RNs Plan Informational Picket, Urge Management to Address Turnover Rates and Invest in Retaining Nursing Staff
When: Tuesday - July 24, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Where: Central Florida Regional Hospital, 1401 W. Seminole Blvd., Sanford, Fla.

Nurses also plan informational pickets at four other HCA-affiliated hospitals on the same date, July 24, in the following locations: Fawcett Memorial Hospital, Port Charlotte, Fla., Las Palmas Medical Center in El Paso, Texas, Corpus Christi Medical Center in Corpus Christi, Texas, and MountainView Hospital in Las Vegas, Nev. Earlier this month registered nurses also held informational pickets at six other HCA-affiliated hospitals in Florida.

The hospital’s turnover rates are borne out in their own data, which nurses obtained through an information request. Fully a third of the registered nurses have worked at CFRH for less than 18 months, while well over half, 58 percent, have worked there for less than three years.

“We want our hospital to invest in the nursing staff because it is vital for quality patient care,” said Eve Meikle, RN, Medical Surgical. “They have the resources to invest for the benefit of our patients, especially as recipients of huge tax cuts under the Tax Cut and Jobs Act.”

The hospital’s data also reveals difficulties in complying with their own staffing grids. Data supplied by the hospital covering the months of November 2017 and January 2018, shows various units out of compliance with the hospital’s own staffing grid, including the ICU, 31 percent of the time, the Cardiovascular ICU, 23 percent of the time, and the Cardiac Neuro East Unit, 36 percent of the time.

“The retention and recruitment of RNs is a key component to providing optimal patient care,” said Karen Wildberger, RN, Outpatient Surgery.  “As patient advocates we’re urging the hospital to ensure quality care by complying with its own staffing grids and taking steps to reduce the turnover rate.”

One purpose of a hospital staffing grid is to assure that there are enough nurses to attend to patients' needs in a safe and timely way, taking under consideration the kinds of care required in each unit, including the degree of acuity or sickness. 

The 314 registered nurses at Central Florida Regional Hospital are members of the National Nurses Organizing Committee, NNOC/Florida. Their contract expired May 31, 2018 and they are in ongoing contract negotiations. NNOC/Florida is affiliated with National Nurses United, the largest and fastest growing union of registered nurses in the United States with 150,000 members. NNU plays a leadership role in safeguarding the health and safety of RNs and their patients and has won landmark legislation in the areas of staffing, safe patient handling, infectious disease and workplace violence prevention.