Nurses picket for safer staffing levels at McLaren Lapeer

(Source: WNEM)

Nurses at McLaren in Lapeer are making their voices heard.

They said there is a desperate need for more nurses to ensure all patients are properly cared for.

“We need to spend more time with these patients,” said Sheila Lane, registered nurse at McLaren Lapeer Regional Medical Center.

Lane said she is worried about patient safety. She joined dozens of other nurses for an informational picket on Thursday.

She said there are too many patients and not enough nurses on the floor.

“When we have five or six patients they don’t get the time and the education they need when they’re fighting illnesses,” Lane said.

The Michigan Nurses Association said they organized the demonstration to educate the community about the stalled contract negotiations with the hospital. They are asking for a contract they say would ensure safe staffing levels.

Lane said they have been trying to reach an agreement for nearly a year with no luck.

“I want our patients to feel safe when they come to the hospital. And right now, nurses are consistently having more patients than they can care for in a way that’s needed,” Lane said.

McLaren in Lapeer said they are doing everything in their power to make sure the hospital continues to run smoothly.

The hospital releases a statement saying, “McLaren Lapeer Region staffs nurses according to our current contract with our nursing union members, which outlines staffing levels based on patient volume. We continue to provide safe, compassionate, high quality care to our patients as the centerpiece of our commitment to a healthier community.”

Lane hopes the public display sends a signal that the nurses are serious about change.

“Negotiate a fair contract for safe RN staffing levels,” Lane said.

Following the picket, McLaren reached out to the nurses’ association. Negotiations will continue next week.

Copyright 2018 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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