- Efforts by Allina Health to maintain services during a nurses’ strike are being undermined by inexperienced replacement nurses, potentially compromising patient care, the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal reported.
- Tracy Mitchum, a Georgia-based replacement nurse assigned to Mercy Hospital in Coon Rapids, told the Star Tribune that some replacement nurses lack experience or have been assigned to duties for which they weren’t trained.
- Mitchum’s concerns echo those of 4,800 striking nurses, who argue that Allina’s attempt to replace them could hurt care quality and continuity.
The Minnesota Nurses Association called off contract negotiations on June 13, prompting Allina to launch a nationwide search for replacement nurses in which MNA nurses went on strike.
At the time, the company said it would hire 1,400 nurses to ensure surgeries and other services continued uninterrupted. Allina offered prospective candidates free travel to Minnesota and a $400 signing bonus.
Mitchum briefly joined the picket line with the striking nurses before returning home. Allina maintains she was let go.
In addition to Mercy, the week-old strike affects Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis, United Hospital in St. Paul, Unity Hospital in Fridley and Phillips Eye Institute in Minneapolis.