When problems in the nation’s health care system are discussed, some of the most-often mentioned culprits include excessive litigation, intrusive regulation and of course, evil private company profits.
It’s time to add another factor to the list: Nurses unions.
From the AP, via KMOX, via Combest:
“Nurses with St. John’s Mercy Health System went on strike for a month starting in December 2004,” apparently because the hospital refused to fire their non-unionized co-workers. (It may not be polite to point out, but in such situations it must be noted: unions exist, in large part, to bully others like this. Where is Rep. Sara Lampe when you need her!)
After voluntarily walking off the job, they demand unemployment payments. The National Labor Relations Board, a federal court and the Missouri Supreme Court determined that the hospital committed an unfair labor practice in refusing to terminate the non-unionized employees, and granted the striking nurses jobless benefits.
With three judicial bodies reaching this conclusion, it appears the unions certainly had a legal leg to stand on. While I’m not holding out hope for this happening anytime soon, the statues or regulations the nurses unions used to their advantage should be re-examined. And if the hospital simply negotiated a foolish agreement (think Detroit) with the unions in the first place that made room for such conduct, then they are equally to blame.
With unions like this, it’s not hard to see why the health care system is a mess. For a good source on the problems unions cause, visit The Center on Union Facts.