Urge HCA CEO to put patient & Nurse safety above profits!

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Dear Mr. Hazen:

We, the employees at your hospitals, are falling ill from COVID-19. Some of us are even dying. We fear we're spreading disease to our patients due to lack of PPE, cross-contamination from reusing gowns and other PPE, and unsafe staffing levels.

At the same time that HCA utterly failed to maintain preparedness and sufficient PPE, you focused on pulling profits out of the company to enrich investors like yourself. In 2019 and the first quarter 2020, HCA made about $4.1 billion and extracted more than $2 billion in share repurchases and dividend payments. You are one of the highest paid CEOs in the U.S., earning $27 million last year.

And while this pandemic might be causing a temporary pause in that gravy train, HCA appears to maintain “industry leading financial flexibility” and “ample liquidity” in the midst of the pandemic.* HCA just received $4.7 billion in federal funds and advances from the federal CARES Act and Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund and announced $75 million per month in payroll tax relief that started in April.

While the nation calls us Healthcare Heroes and we do our best to push through our long shifts with inadequate PPE, insufficient staff and little or no rest and meal periods, we received a memo from you that describes significant takeaways and cuts. In addition to your memo, we received another from our hospitals making it clear that HCA is demanding cuts. 

Here's what we ask:

  • Walk a Day in our Heroic Shoes—come spend a day with us in our hospitals and see firsthand our struggles.
  • Demand that your leadership team negotiate in good faith over our health and safety, working conditions and other items in our collective bargaining agreements.
  • Follow the proper process of notification to our Union with regard to HCA’s contractual obligations.

Fighting for our Patients’ Lives and Ours,
The Registered Nurses and Licensed Professionals of SEIU Local 121RN

*Source: https://www.fitchratings.com/research/corporate-finance/fitch-affirms-hca-healthcare-at-bb-outlook-stable-19-05-2020