12,000 nurses in Minnesota went on strike today in what has been reported as the largest nursing strike in US history. The Minnesota Nurses Association voted to approve the one-day strike last month after the union failed to reach a staffing agreement with Twin Cities Hospitals, a 14-hospital system located in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area.
The staffing plan proposed by Twin Cities Hospitals would allow hospitals to float nurses between departments to meet staffing needs. The MNA argued that this plan would lead to inconsistency in patient care and would burden an already stretched nursing staff. Twin Cities Hospitals argued that the staffing model proposed by the MNA was too costly in a time where hospitals are being asked to implement new technology while facing funding cuts.
Twin Cities hired temporary nurses to ensure that its facilities could remain open during the strike. The striking nurses are scheduled to return to work at 7 AM on June 11.
The Minnesota strike occurred as California nurses agreed to comply with a judge's temporary order stopping a strike against the University of California hospital system. The California strike was expected involve 12,000 nurses.
Source: ABC News