[March 16, 2020] OAKLAND, Calif. – Healthcare workers across California are calling on the state’s hospitals to immediately adopt three key security and safety measures to protect workers and the public from the coronavirus.
The workers, members of the Service Employees International Union – United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW), say the measures will provide a safer environment for everyone and help ensure the maximum number of healthcare workers are available to treat a growing number of Covid-19 cases in the state.
They are calling on hospitals and county health officials to immediately put in place the following specific measures:
SEIU-UHW members have been reaching out to management in the nearly 150 hospitals where they work to demand that the facilities implement the security and safety protections immediately, and to go over a detailed checklist covering education and training, protocols, space and equipment, staffing and communications.
“Security and safety procedures are still too loose and must be tightened immediately to create safer environments in our hospitals to protect patients and staff,” said Dave Regan, president of SEIU-UHW. “The fear that the number of new coronavirus patients will overwhelm our healthcare system is real, and we will certainly not be able handle the growing caseload if large numbers of healthcare workers get sick or are quarantined and unable to take care of people who contract the virus.”