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Nurses Set To Picket UC Hospitals

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Aired 6/10/10

Nurses at UC Medical Center in Hillcrest will stage an informational picket tomorrow, after a judge issued a temporary order blocking a planned strike. Nurses want to call attention to what they call serious staffing problems.

— Nurses at U-C Medical Center in Hillcrest will stage an informational picket tomorrow, after a judge issued a temporary order blocking a planned strike. Nurses want to call attention to what they call serious staffing problems.

State law requires strict nurse-to-patient ratios in all hospital units. Nurses complain UC hospitals haven't hired enough staff to comply with the ratios when nurses take breaks or eat meals.

Nurse Geri Jenkins just retired after working for more than 30 years at UC Medical Center in Hillcrest. She said hospital officials try to downplay the issue.

"They keep insisting there's no problem," Jenkins said. "When there's a problem almost daily in every shift in every unit, where nurses are watching each others' patients and doubling up on the ratios to go to breaks."

UC officials insist their hospitals follow the law.

Both sides are headed back to court on June 18th. Nurses said they'll argue they have the right to go on strike.

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