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By Mathew Keller, RN JD

MNA Regulatory and Nursing Policy Specialist

It is a common misconception that nurses get great healthcare at a reduced price through their employer. It makes sense. If I work at the car dealership, I get an employee discount on cars, right? Not so for employees in the healthcare field. Despite working with the sickest of the sick, despite having higher rates of work-related injuries and illnesses than any other industry, and despite putting themselves in harm’s way for the sake of their patients every single day, healthcare employees often have sub-par health insurance and access to healthcare. 
… Read more about: Attempts to Diminish RN Healthcare Benefits are Short Sighted  »


By Eileen Gavin

MNA Political Organizer

There is a saying in politics.  “If you are not at the table you are ON the table.” Don’t let that be case this legislative session. The 2016 Minnesota Legislative Session begins March 8 and is scheduled to adjourn May 23. While the physical landscape is literally different this year with the Capitol renovation still underway, the nature of the work remains the same. When your elected officials get back to work, business leaders, lobbyists, advocacy groups, and Minnesotans from all over the state will descend on the Capitol to advance their respective causes.
… Read more about: Come to the table!  »

By Mathew Keller, RN, JD

MNA Nursing Policy and Practice Specialist

As this blog detailed last year, fears of a nursing shortage in Minnesota are somewhat unfounded. In fact, at the time, Minnesota was licensing more than three Registered Nurses for every new job opening in the state.

We’ve crunched the numbers once again this year, and it turns out the trend of licensing more RNs than there are jobs for continues. Add to this the fact that the number of job openings for RNs in the state actually decreased last year, and you have a recipe for plenty of competition over every available RN job.
… Read more about: Is There a Nursing Shortage? Part 2  »

Contact: Rick Fuentes
(o) 651-414-2863
(c) 612-741-0662

Barbara Brady
(o) 651-414-2849
(c) 651-202-0845

(Baudette) – February 26, 2016 – LakeWood Health Center “interfered with, restrained or coerced employees in the exercise of their rights” to unionize, according to a complaint issued by the National Labor Relations Board on Feb. 22.

The NLRB complaint was in response to an Unfair Labor Practice charge filed by the Minnesota Nurses Association after LakeWood illegally withdrew recognition of the union in the middle of bargaining a first contract.

“LakeWood clearly violated our rights,” said McCall Plourde, an X-ray technologist at LakeWood.
… Read more about: Press Release: LakeWood Health Center Illegally ‘Coerced,’ ‘Interrogated’ Staff: National Labor Relations Board  »

Contact: Rick Fuentes
(o) 651-414-2863
(c) 612-741-0662

Barbara Brady
(o) 651-414-2849
(c) 651-202-0845

(St. Paul) – February 25, 2016 – Minnesota Nurses Association nurses from Unity, United, Abbott Northwestern/Phillips Eye Institute, and Mercy hospitals overwhelmingly rejected Allina Health’s offer to eliminate MNA health plans during all-day voting today.

The offer would have ended four different health insurance plans for nurses, which have been part of the MNA contracts for 20 years. Allina offered to keep one of those plans for one year.

“I have very good insurance now. I don’t want to lose that insurance,” said Valerie Johnson, RN at Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis.
… Read more about: Press Release: MNA Nurses at Metro Allina Health Hospitals Reject Management Offer  »

By Mathew Keller RN JD, Regulatory and Policy Nursing Specialist

In order to prevent the spread of communicable diseases, it is standard practice across the healthcare industry for healthcare workers who suspect they may have the signs or symptoms of communicable illness to report their symptoms to infection control.

Indeed, Medicare Conditions for Participation for receiving Medicare reimbursement require facilities to put in place “a system for identifying, reporting, investigating and controlling infections and communicable diseases of patients and personnel.”

So far so good.  It makes sense that healthcare workers who may have a communicable disease should work with infection control personnel to prevent the spread of disease and make sure they are symptom free before they return to work.
… Read more about: Blog: TMI Alert – Is Your Protected Health Information Safe in the Workplace?  »

021216_Bernie_MN-7194 (1)

By Geri Katz

Single Payer Healthcare Specialist


Caring, compassion, and community. These are the values at the heart of registered nursing. National Nurses United, which represents some 190,000 nurses nationwide, seeks to uphold that positive vision for the health of this country by endorsing Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders for president.

Senator Sanders was the only candidate to score 100 percent on NNU’s issue questionnaire: he’s the only candidate with us on safe and quality nurse staffing, universal healthcare or Medicare for all, and a fee on Wall Street speculation or the “Robin Hood Tax.” His campaign is exceeding expectations at nearly every turn.
… Read more about: Nurses4Bernie Get Out to Caucus  »

By Laura Sayles

MNA Government Affairs SpecialistVersion 2

This year the legislative session starts much later than usual, even for the second year of the biennium. Session begins on Tuesday, March 8, 2016, and it’s expected that the pace will be fast and furious for ten weeks until adjournment in May, 2016. Last year’s session required a short Special Session to pass some of the omnibus bills that didn’t pass during the regular session, but not all the work got finished. Taxes and transportation are still on the table, and, by most accounts, those are the two subjects that will dominate the 2016 Session.
… Read more about: Three Weeks until the 2016 Session Starts  »

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders stopped by a reception to speak to Registered Nurse Members of the Minnesota Nurses Association.  Hundreds of MNA members have organized “Nurses4Bernie” rallies in Minnesota and Iowa to drum up support for the Democratic Presidential candidate.  After the event, Sanders spoke at the Humphrey-Mondale fundraiser dinner in St. Paul, Minnesota.
… Read more about: Video: Bernie Sanders Speaks to Minnesota Nurses Association Members  »

(St. Paul) – February 12, 2016 – Democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders told Minnesota Nurses Association members the healthcare system doesn’t allow them to do their job. The Vermont Senator spoke at a private reception on Friday afternoon before attending the Humphrey-Mondale Dinner in St. Paul.

“When 29 million people have no health insurance, when many people have high deductibles and high co-payments, when we pay the highest prices in the world for prescription drugs, you cannot do the job you are trained and dedicated to do,” Sanders said to the crowd of more than 80 nurses.

Many of these MNA members have held “Nurses4Bernie” events in Minnesota and Iowa to raise support for the only candidate who supports a Single Payer initiative.
… Read more about: Press Release: Bernie Sanders Speaks at Minnesota Nurses Association Event  »