Day one: UCMC nurses on strike

Thousands of nurses at the University of Chicago Medical Center will be on strike after contract negotiations failed.The main issue at hand is inadequate staffing. Hospital administrators say that's a misleading allegation since this hospital is ranked best staffed in the city and state.Keya Griffin is a nurse case manager. She says in the Intensive Care Unit the ratio of patients to nurses is 2:1 or 1:1, but sometimes ICU nurses triple up, which causes issues on the general floor. Chief Nursing Officer Debi Albert says there's a group that's co-led by union member nurses and leaders who review those complaints and solve them together.But there's another issue that union nurses say needs more work: security measures. Albert says that the issue was discussed at the negotiation table this past Wednesday and that both sides agreed on a path forward. Despite their "generous" proposal, the union didn't budge. The strike will last five days. During that time, Albert says emergency departments will remain open for patients and walk-ins.Ambulance traffic will get rerouted to other hospitals which Albert says they're in constant communication with to prevent overcrowding.

09/20/19 11:15AM