Contact: Rick Fuentes
(St. Paul) – April 25, 2020 – The Minnesota Nurses Association has serious concerns with Executive Order 20-46, which allows nurses from other states to work at Long Term Care and other healthcare facilities, just as hundreds of Minnesota RN’s will begin receiving unemployment checks due to furlough.
Despite efforts to negotiate with Minnesota Hospitals, the terms of these furloughs force nurses to either go without a paycheck or jeopardize their ability to return to work after the pandemic. Even when nurses requested the ability to work in a different facility where they are needed while they are furloughed from their regular job, hospitals refused. Instead, hospitals are forcing healthcare facilities to bring in health professionals from other parts of the country who will not only do work that could be done by Minnesota’s skilled nursing workforce, but they will also make significantly higher salaries. It’s irresponsible of Minnesota hospitals to prefer that skilled nurses receive unemployment over working to create a simple solution that provides needed care for Minnesotans.
Minnesota nurses continue to have concerns about relaxing the ability to bring in nurses from any state, regardless of that state’s training and requirements. Minnesota nurses have some of the highest levels of training and educational requirements in the country. They are specifically trained on how to care for patients according to Minnesota state law, while nurses from other states may not have an understanding of the law or the same high level of training.
Minnesota Nurses call on the Governor, legislators and hospitals to come together to work on creating a statewide labor pool made up of furloughed, unemployed and retired Minnesota nurses to answer the great need being faced in our healthcare facilities. As Minnesotans, we can solve this problem in a way that makes use of our trained nurses who are not working and doesn’t unnecessarily increase the cost of care.
Minnesota nurses are highly trained workers that are trusted to take care of Minnesota patients, and these nurses want to continue to practice their profession wherever they are needed. For the health of Minnesotans and the health of our economy, let’s make sure that Minnesota’s own nursing workforce is taking care of Minnesota patients.