Allina

By Mathew Keller RN JD

MNA Regulatory and Policy Specialist

“In Minnesota, like the rest of the country, our health care system is in crisis. Healthcare premiums have increased at double-digit levels year-after-year. Employers are being squeezed by these costs, and healthcare has become prohibitively expensive for many self-employed, retired, and uninsured citizens. In this climate, nonprofit healthcare organizations owe a heightened duty to show proper stewardship.”

This was testimony offered to the U.S. Senate Finance committee not this week, not this year, not even this decade—but on April 5, 2005, by then-Minnesota Attorney General Mike Hatch. It was spurred in part by a comprehensive audit performed by the Attorney General’s office on Allina Health and its subsidiary insurance company, Medica.
… Read more about: With Allina-Aetna Insurance Partnership, It’s Buyer Beware  »

By Mathew Keller

MNA Regulatory and Policy Nursing Specialist

Allina’s final estimate of how much money it wasted on labor strife is in, with the health system pegging its total strike costs at 149 million dollars. As Allina employees know, however, this number is an underestimate. While the estimate includes the cost of shipping replacement nurses into Minnesota and paying them hourly rates that would make a cardiologist blush, and subtracts the costs Allina would have paid its trusted nurses were they not on strike– it does not account for the fact that Allina has been and will continue to pay eye-popping sums for replacement nurses well into 2017 due to the extreme level of nurse-turnover post-strike.
… Read more about: What can $149 million get you?  »

By Mat Keller, RN, JD, MNA Regulatory and Policy Nursing Specialist

What does the Allina strike mean for non-Allina nurses? I’m sure if you’re a nurse in Minnesota, Iowa, or Wisconsin, you’ve asked yourself a similar question. And it’s not unreasonable. What, exactly, does the Allina strike mean for the profession?

Nothing less than our future.

Allina Health is a corporate entity that has managed to build up $1.3 billion in stock market reserves, $160 million in Caribbean bank accounts, and $300 million in cash, according to its most recent federal Form 990 financial disclosures.
… Read more about: Why the Allina strike continues to matter  »

By Mathew Keller, RN JD
Regulatory and Policy Nursing Specialist 

In a famous 1863 lawsuit involving landlord rights, Graves v. Berdan, a New York landlord sued a tenant for failing to pay his rent— for leased space in a building that had burned down. Surprisingly enough, the legal precedent at that time required tenants to continue paying rent even after the space being leased ceased to exist.

Such is the power of landlords. They grant their tenants certain rights and uses of property through the provisions of a lease. However, leases also create obligations for tenants – for example, an obligation to pay rent, an obligation to mow the lawn, an obligation to not destroy the premises; or, in the case of the tenant of Unity Hospital, Allina Health, an obligation to “operate a hospital for the benefit of, and open to, all residents of the community upon equal terms” and to “use the leased premises for a public hospital,” according to the terms of its lease with the North Suburban Hospital District Board.
… Read more about: A Hospital for $1?  »

Nurses Will be Off ‘Strike Status’ by Sunday Morning

For Immediate Release

Contact:  Rick Fuentes
(o) 651-414-2863
(c) 612-741-0662
rick.fuentes@mnnurses.org

Barbara Brady
(o) 651-414-2849
(c) 651-202-0845
barbara.brady@mnnurses.org

 

(St. Paul) – October 13, 2016 – A majority of the striking nurses represented by the Minnesota Nurses Association have voted in favor of the tentative agreement with Allina Health reached on October 11.

Nurses from Abbott Northwestern, Mercy, Phillips Eye Institute, United, and Unity hospitals voted to ratify the contract today.

“This contract represents compromise and strength by the nurses,” said MNA Executive Director Rose Roach.
… Read more about: Press Release: Nurses Ratify Contract with Allina Health  »

Unfair Labor Practice Strike Will End Today

For Immediate Release

Contact:  Rick Fuentes
(o) 651-414-2863
(c) 612-741-0662
rick.fuentes@mnnurses.org

Barbara Brady
(o) 651-414-2849
(c) 651-202-0845
barbara.brady@mnnurses.org

(St. Paul) – October 11, 2016 – After a 17 hour negotiating session beginning at 11:00am on Monday, October 10, 2016, the Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA) and Allina Health announced that they have reached a tentative agreement on all outstanding contract issues. The two groups came together with the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service to negotiate at the Governor’s Residence, at the request of Governor Dayton and Lt.
… Read more about: Press Release: Nurses Come to a Contract Agreement with Allina Health  »

By Mathew Keller, RN JD
Regulatory and Policy Nursing Specialist 

If a recent demand letter from Piper Jaffray’s attorneys to the Minnesota

Nurses Association is any indication, it’s safe to say that our campaign to agitate, educate, and advocate against the overzealous pursuit of profits in non-profit healthcare, the questionable business dealings between Allina and members of its board, and the relentless march toward the corporatization of healthcare have all been a smashing success. Make no mistake, this is a David versus Goliath fight that’s barely just begun — and one corporate Goliath is already bemoaning the audacity of nurse David to throw stones at it, the venerable Piper Jaffray.
… Read more about: High-Powered Piper Jaffray Attorneys Seek to Quiet the Voice of Nurses: Nurses Refuse to be Silenced  »

Contact:  Rick Fuentes

(o) 651-414-2863
(c) 612-741-0662

rick.fuentes@mnnurses.org
Barbara Brady
(o) 651-414-2849
(c) 651-202-0845
barbara.brady@mnnurses.org

 

(Minneapolis) – September 19, 2016 –  Two dozen Minnesota legislators showed up to support striking Allina nurses and walk the picket line today.Speaking at a news conference outside Abbott Northwestern Hospital, legislators from districts served by Allina Health hospitals called on Allina to negotiate a fair contract with  nurses and signed a letter supporting MNA nurses.

“It is time to settle this contract,” said Rep. Erin Murphy, also a registered nurse. “By keeping nurses out on the picket line, they are driving costs up, and those dollars they are spending are community dollars.”

“What we’re fighting for today, and what’s brought out so many of us to stand beside you, is that we want a state where people should be valued not just for their value to the marketplace but for their value to other human beings, which you can’t put a dollar value on,” Rep.
… Read more about: Press Release: Legislators to Allina: Negotiate a Fair Contract with Nurses  »

Resolution Would Abolish Community Oversight Board

Contact:  Rick Fuentes
(o) 651-414-2863
(c) 612-741-0662
rick.fuentes@mnnurses.org

Barbara Brady
(o) 651-414-2849
(c) 651-202-0845
barbara.brady@mnnurses.org

(Fridley) – September 13, 2016 – The North Suburban Hospital Board will be abolished and cede control of operations to Allina Health if a resolution passes Wednesday night. The motion comes just as there’s an election for three new citizens to sit on the board, including three healthcare workers.”The North Suburban Hospital Board provides the public with a voice in Unity,” said MNA Executive Director Rose Roach. “If the board begins the process of dissolving, there will be no accountability to the taxpayers who fund the hospital and rely on it for their healthcare needs.”

The hospital board overseeing Unity Hospital operations and administration collects fees and borrows money to maintain the facility. 
… Read more about: Allina Health Seeks Sole Control of Unity Hospital    »

(St. Paul) – September 8, 2016 – Striking MNA nurses and the St. Paul Regional Labor Federation are showing their commitment to the community with a blood drive on September 9.

Nurses from United Hospital and the St. Paul Regional Labor Federation have arranged for the Red Cross to hold a blood drive at the St. Paul Regional Labor Federation offices at 353 West 7th Street between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

“Doing things to give back to  the community helps nurses feel like we’re still taking care of patients while we’re on strike,” said United RN Kelsey Swenson, who took the lead in organizing the blood drive.
… Read more about: Press Release: Striking nurses, St. Paul RLF contribute to community with blood drive  »