MARSHALL (KMHL) – Organizers estimate more than 90 nurses turned out to participate in yesterday’s informational picket held by nurses outside of Avera Marshall Regional Medical Center.
The crowd held signs and gathered to bring attention to their concerns about nurse staffing changes; they say have impacted patient care and safety.
“What I’d like to see is administration take us seriously that we do indeed have concerns that are legitimate,” said Avera Marshall nurse Val Buysse. “It’s patient safety that we’re concerned about, it’s our professional license on the line.”
Dr. Trent Carlson, a surgeon at Avera Marshall said that doctors are paying attention to what the nurses are saying. He says they do have some legitimate concerns.
“I’m sure there are things to say on both sides,” said Carlson. “But to say that the doctors are completely unaware or don’t have a stake in this is wrong.”
Avera Marshall released a statement earlier this week, ahead of the nurses picket.
“We respect our MNA-represented employees’ right to speak out on issues of importance to them. While we disagree with their position in this instance, we will never lose sight of the larger reality that our nurses are skilled professionals who are an essential part of the care we provide,” said Avera. “If they – or any employee – have any safety concerns, we hope they’ll bring them forward to be addressed; to this point, they have not done so. Our patients and visitors can be assured that this informational picket will have no impact on the high-quality care we provide.”