Seton workers continue fight to safeguard care
NUHW members at Seton Medical Center in Daly City are taking action to protect patients from the hospital’s new owner that has cut staffing, while refusing to pay its bills or fix broken medical equipment.
AHMC, which purchased the hospital via bankruptcy court last year, has forced patients to delay heart procedures and wait up to to five months for mammograms because of understaffing and a lack of working equipment.
The company has also failed to pay its food vendor multiple times, forcing workers to drive to Costco so their patients would have food. The hospital has also lacked filtered water for ventilators and clean linen for patients. Recently, five of the hospital’s six elevators were out of service and the hospital announced plans to layoff 24 workers.
Workers have gone public with their concerns, letting community members know that while AHMC is following through with a publicly-subsidized seismic retrofit of the hospital, the company is letting medical services collapse.
“This is the worst it’s ever been,” said Christina Caridis, a radiologic technologist. “The seismic work is needed, but our community is going to lose faith in our hospital if the owner can’t pay its bills, fix its equipment and give us the tools to safely care for our patients.”
Seton workers have been documenting what is transpiring at the hospital to file complaints, and this month more than 60 workers, including registered nurses represented by the California Nurses Association marched together to the offices of Seton executives to demand action.
“We are not going to let AHMC get away with what they’re doing to our community hospital,” said Henry Sytio, CNA and NUHW steward. “We are more united and more determined than ever to protect our hospitals, our jobs and our patients.”