How the state plans to ensure quality during the nurse union's strike

How the state plans to ensure quality during the nurse union's strike. (WJAR)

RI Health officials prepare for nurse’s strike at Rhode Island and Hasbro Children’s Hospitals.

24-hundred nurses, therapists and techs will be out on strike as of Monday 3pm.

"Right now we've licensed close to 1500 individuals to come in and we're continuing to process additional applications," said Joseph Wendelken, spokesman for the Rhode Island Department of Health.

All this, through a firm that represents replacement workers.

"We need verification from their home state that they're licensed there, that their license is in good standing in that home state. We do a BCI check, a criminal background check and then finally there's the actual application which details their education, their work history and all of that gets reviewed before the license is issued," said Wendelken.

And, he says, those replacement workers will be closely monitored.

"Quality care, safe care is absolutely a top priority for the department of health and that's why we're going to actually have staff on site at both hospitals for the duration of the work stoppage there."

Statement from Governor Raimondo on Lifespan’s Dispute with Nurses

My primary concern is for Rhode Island patients, so I’m urging Lifespan and UNAP to work with the federal mediator and get a fair deal done quickly. Nurses are the backbone of our healthcare system and play an essential role to provide high quality healthcare. I’ve directed Dr. Alexander-Scott and the Department of Health to closely monitor the situation and ensure that any temporary workers are fully certified to our high standards and that the hospitals maintain adequate staffing levels during the strike.
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