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Hundreds Of Backus Hospital Nurses Strike In Norwich

NORWICH, CT — Hundreds of Backus Hospital nurses are striking due to a dispute over pay and protective equipment, according to The Hartford Courant. The hospital and the Backus Federation of Nurses have been in contract talks since June.

The strike is expected to last two days.

A statement from the Backus Federation of Nurses reads: “After months of calling the nurses of Backus Hospital ‘heroes,’ management has resisted bargaining a fair contract, and instead chosen to violate our rights under the National Labor Relations Act. We’ve filed Unfair Labor Practice charges calling out Backus managers and Hartford HealthCare (HHC) executives on their intimidation and threatening of nurses for union activity. We’re taking a stand for what we need in these negotiations to be able to work safely during the next wave of this pandemic.”

The nurses’ union is also asking for additional accommodations for breastfeeding.

The hospital said it has offered wage increases of 12.5 percent over the course of the three-year contract, as well as additional time off for most nurses and a 2 percent reduction in health insurance premiums, according to The Courant.

The hospital was recently in the news due to a coronavirus outbreak of nine cases, including cases where nurses tested positive. It is believed this outbreak is linked to an earlier outbreak at Three Rivers Healthcare, a nursing home also in Norwich.

This article originally appeared on the Norwich Patch

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Nurses at Backus Hospital in Norwich plan to strike Tuesday in protest over contract talks

Nurses at Backus Hospital in Norwich are set to strike Tuesday and Wednesday to protest what they say is the company’s refusal to negotiate a contract.

The hospital and Backus Federation of Nurses, part of AFT Connecticut that represents more than 400 nurses have been in contract talks since June. The two sides differ on compensation, improved distribution of personal protective equipment and recruiting and keeping new nurses, according to the union.

A spokeswoman for parent company Hartford HealthCare did not immediately respond to questions about staffing at Backus Hospital during the walkout. Donna Handley, president of the hospital, said earlier this month Backus will remain open during a strike and will work to reach an agreement.

Union President Sherri Dayton said recent negotiations led to progress on improved protective gear policies, expanded access for breastfeeding by new mothers and accountability for safe patient limits.

But the company has not yielded on calls by the union to improve recruitment and retention of nurses, the union said.

The union has organized a rally Tuesday at the hospital and will be joined by U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney, D-2nd, Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, and other labor leaders and elected officials.

Nurses at the not-for-profit hospital are seeking higher pay and more staff to relieve nurses who often work hours after the end of their shifts, the union said. They also say they are forced to reuse personal protective equipment kept in paper bags until it’s compromised or soiled and are demanding Hartford Healthcare keep a three-month supply of N95 masks.

Hartford HealthCare insists personal protective equipment is always available to patients and staff.

Stephen Singer can be reached at ssinger@courant.com.

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©2020 The Hartford Courant (Hartford, Conn.)

Visit The Hartford Courant (Hartford, Conn.) at www.courant.com

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More than half of French nurses approaching burn-out: survey

More than half of French nurses are close to burning out, according to a survey of nearly 60,000 of them published on Sunday, which found they were struggling with cancelled holidays and increased work due to coronavirus.

The survey carried out by the national French nursing union found that 57 percent of respondents reported being in a “state of professional exhaustion”, up from 33 percent before the global Covid-19 pandemic struck France early in 2020.

The findings underline the strains being felt in the healthcare sector in Europe, which came under unprecedented pressure during the first wave of infections and now faces another surge in admissions.

The results are also likely to increase pressure on the centrist French government of President Emmanuel Macron, with more than a third of nurses saying their departments were understaffed compared to normal, and two thirds saying working conditions have deteriorated since the start of the pandemic. 

One in five nurses said they had been unable to take a holiday since March.

“While there are 34,000 vacant nurses’ positions at this time in 2020… the degraded working conditions mean we risk seeing even more nurses throwing in the towel,” the union said in its statement.

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French nurses’ poll paints grim picture as virus cases soar

PARIS (AP) — A significant number of French nurses responding to a poll say they are tired and fed up, with 37% saying that the coronavirus pandemic is making them want to change jobs.

The poll published Sunday by the National Order of Nurses comes as COVID-19 infection rates soar across the nation.

French health authorities counted nearly 26,900 new daily infections Saturday and had four more cities join Paris and Marseille in the maximum alert category: Lyon, Grenoble and Saint-Etienne in the southeast and Lille in the north.

There were just under 5,000 new hospitalizations over the past week, with 928 of them in ICUs, and the positive rate for the increasing number of COVID-19 tests climbed to 11%. Nearly 32,690 coronavirus deaths have been counted in France, but the actual number is likely far higher, due to limited testing and missed cases.

Nearly 59,400 nurses responded to the Oct. 2-7 poll on the impact of the health crisis on their working conditions, out of 350,000 in the Order of Nurses. The numbers painted a grim diagnosis of the profession and suggested that French medical facilities may not be keeping pace with the growing need, despite lessons that should have been learned from the height of the virus crisis last spring.

Of nurses in public establishments, 43% feel that “we are not better prepared collectively to respond to a new wave of infections,” according to the poll. The figure rises to 46% for nurses in the private domain. And about two-thirds of respondents say their working conditions have deteriorated since the start of the crisis.

Burnout looms, the poll shows, with 57% of respondents saying they have been professionally exhausted since the start of pandemic, while nearly half saying there’s a strong risk that fatigue will impact the quality of care patients receive.


For 37% of the nurses responding, “the crisis … makes them want to change jobs,” and 43% “don’t know if they will still be nurses in five years,” according to the poll, which did not provide a margin of error.

The National Order of Nurses notes that 34,000 nurses’ jobs in France are currently vacant.

Nurses and other health professionals in France and elsewhere have sporadically demonstrated for higher salaries, better working conditions and more personnel, even during the pandemic. They were given small salary hikes in France starting this fall.

“Today, nurses must deal with a growth in COVID-19 cases and feel unarmed to do so,” the president of the National Order of Nurses, Patrick Chamboredon, said in a statement accompanying the poll.

With nurses “indispensable” to the functioning of the health system, “we cannot accept that,” he said.

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Follow AP coverage of the virus outbreak at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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Nurses suffer burn-out, psychological distress in COVID fight: association

By Cecile Mantovani



a person standing in front of a mirror posing for the camera: FILE PHOTO: A nurse wearing protective gear is seen inside a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) sampling room of the Synlab laboratory, at El Dorado airport in Bogota


© Reuters/LUISA GONZALEZ
FILE PHOTO: A nurse wearing protective gear is seen inside a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) sampling room of the Synlab laboratory, at El Dorado airport in Bogota

GENEVA (Reuters) – Many nurses caring for COVID-19 patients are suffering burn-out or psychological distress, and many have faced abuse or discrimination outside of work, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) said.

Supplies of personal protective equipment for nurses and other health workers in some care homes remain insufficient, it said, marking World Mental Health Day on Saturday.

“We are extremely concerned about the mental health impact on nurses,” Howard Catton, a British nurse who is the ICN’s chief executive, told Reuters Television at the association’s headquarters in Geneva.

“Our most recent survey of national nurses’ associations shows that more than 70% of them (the associations) were saying that nurses have been subject to violence or discrimination and as a result of that they are very concerned about extreme cases of psychological distress and mental health pressure,” he said.

Nurses suffer burn-out, psychological distress in COVID fight: association

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The figure was based on responses from roughly a quarter of its national nurses’ associations in more than 130 countries.

Nurses face a broad spectrum of issues that affect their mental health, including physical and verbal abuse, Catton said.

“There are nurses who have been subject to discrimination, where their landlord has not renewed their lease for their apartment, or they can’t get child care for their children,” he said, without giving specifics of physical or verbal abuse.

ICN has lobbied for better protection and working conditions for nurses on the front lines of the pandemic.

“We still continue to see problems with the supplies personal protective equipment. There have been improvements, particularly in hospitals,” Catton said.

But some care homes and long-term care facilities in Europe, and in North and South America still lack supplies, he said, citing its members’ survey. 

The World Health Organization said last Monday that services for mentally ill and substance abuse patients have been disrupted worldwide during the pandemic, and COVID-19 is expected to cause further distress for many.

(Reporting by Cecile Mantovani; writing by Stephanie Nebehay and editing by Giles Elgood)

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Nurses suffer burn-out, psychological distress in COVID fight – association

GENEVA (Reuters) – Many nurses caring for COVID-19 patients are suffering burn-out or psychological distress, and many have faced abuse or discrimination outside of work, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) said.

FILE PHOTO: A nurse wearing protective gear is seen inside a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) sampling room of the Synlab laboratory, at El Dorado airport in Bogota, Colombia September 23, 2020. REUTERS/Luisa Gonzalez/File Photo

Supplies of personal protective equipment for nurses and other health workers in some care homes remain insufficient, it said, marking World Mental Health Day on Saturday.

“We are extremely concerned about the mental health impact on nurses,” Howard Catton, a British nurse who is the ICN’s chief executive, told Reuters Television at the association’s headquarters in Geneva.

“Our most recent survey of national nurses’ associations shows that more than 70% of them (the associations) were saying that nurses have been subject to violence or discrimination and as a result of that they are very concerned about extreme cases of psychological distress and mental health pressure,” he said.

The figure was based on responses from roughly a quarter of its national nurses’ associations in more than 130 countries.

Nurses face a broad spectrum of issues that affect their mental health, including physical and verbal abuse, Catton said.

“There are nurses who have been subject to discrimination, where their landlord has not renewed their lease for their apartment, or they can’t get child care for their children,” he said, without giving specifics of physical or verbal abuse.

ICN has lobbied for better protection and working conditions for nurses on the front lines of the pandemic.

“We still continue to see problems with the supplies personal protective equipment. There have been improvements, particularly in hospitals,” Catton said.

But some care homes and long-term care facilities in Europe, and in North and South America still lack supplies, he said, citing its members’ survey.

The World Health Organization said last Monday that services for mentally ill and substance abuse patients have been disrupted worldwide during the pandemic, and COVID-19 is expected to cause further distress for many.

Reporting by Cecile Mantovani; writing by Stephanie Nebehay and editing by Giles Elgood

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Nurses suffer burn-out, psychological distress in COVID fight

By Cecile Mantovani

GENEVA (Reuters) – Many nurses caring for COVID-19 patients are suffering burn-out or psychological distress, and many have faced abuse or discrimination outside of work, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) said.

Supplies of personal protective equipment for nurses and other health workers in some care homes remain insufficient, it said, marking World Mental Health Day on Saturday.

“We are extremely concerned about the mental health impact on nurses,” Howard Catton, a British nurse who is the ICN’s chief executive, told Reuters Television at the association’s headquarters in Geneva.

“Our most recent survey of national nurses’ associations shows that more than 70% of them (the associations) were saying that nurses have been subject to violence or discrimination and as a result of that they are very concerned about extreme cases of psychological distress and mental health pressure,” he said.

The figure was based on responses from roughly a quarter of its national nurses’ associations in more than 130 countries.

Nurses face a broad spectrum of issues that affect their mental health, including physical and verbal abuse, Catton said.

“There are nurses who have been subject to discrimination, where their landlord has not renewed their lease for their apartment, or they can’t get child care for their children,” he said, without giving specifics of physical or verbal abuse.

ICN has lobbied for better protection and working conditions for nurses on the front lines of the pandemic.

“We still continue to see problems with the supplies personal protective equipment. There have been improvements, particularly in hospitals,” Catton said.

But some care homes and long-term care facilities in Europe, and in North and South America still lack supplies, he said, citing its members’ survey.

The World Health Organization said last Monday that services for mentally ill and substance abuse patients have been disrupted worldwide during the pandemic, and COVID-19 is expected to cause further distress for many.

(Reporting by Cecile Mantovani; writing by Stephanie Nebehay and editing by Giles Elgood)

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Nurses Suffer Burn-Out, Psychological Distress in COVID Fight: Association | World News

GENEVA (Reuters) – Many nurses caring for COVID-19 patients are suffering burn-out or psychological distress, and many have faced abuse or discrimination outside of work, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) said.

Supplies of personal protective equipment for nurses and other health workers in some care homes remain insufficient, it said, marking World Mental Health Day on Saturday.

“We are extremely concerned about the mental health impact on nurses,” Howard Catton, a British nurse who is the ICN’s chief executive, told Reuters Television at the association’s headquarters in Geneva.

“Our most recent survey of national nurses’ associations shows that more than 70% of them (the associations) were saying that nurses have been subject to violence or discrimination and as a result of that they are very concerned about extreme cases of psychological distress and mental health pressure,” he said.

The figure was based on responses from roughly a quarter of its national nurses’ associations in more than 130 countries.

Nurses face a broad spectrum of issues that affect their mental health, including physical and verbal abuse, Catton said.

“There are nurses who have been subject to discrimination, where their landlord has not renewed their lease for their apartment, or they can’t get child care for their children,” he said, without giving specifics of physical or verbal abuse.

ICN has lobbied for better protection and working conditions for nurses on the front lines of the pandemic.

“We still continue to see problems with the supplies personal protective equipment. There have been improvements, particularly in hospitals,” Catton said.

But some care homes and long-term care facilities in Europe, and in North and South America still lack supplies, he said, citing its members’ survey.

The World Health Organization said last Monday that services for mentally ill and substance abuse patients have been disrupted worldwide during the pandemic, and COVID-19 is expected to cause further distress for many.

(Reporting by Cecile Mantovani; writing by Stephanie Nebehay and editing by Giles Elgood)

Copyright 2020 Thomson Reuters.

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Doctors and nurses battle virus skeptics

MISSION, Kan. (AP) — Treating the sick and dying isn’t even the toughest part for nurse Amelia Montgomery as the coronavirus surges in her corner of red America.

It’s dealing with patients and relatives who don’t believe the virus is real, refuse to wear masks and demand treatments like hydroxychloroquine, which President Donald Trump has championed even though experts say it is not effective against the scourge that has killed over 210,000 in the U.S.

Montgomery finds herself, like so many other doctors and nurses, in a world where the politics of the crisis are complicating treatment efforts, with some people even resisting getting tested.


It’s unclear how Trump’s bout with the virus will affect the situation, but some doctors aren’t optimistic. After a few days of treatment at a military hospital, the president tweeted Monday, “Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life. … I feel better than I did 20 years ago!”

After one tough shift on the coronavirus unit at Cox South Hospital in Springfield, Montgomery went onto Facebook to vent her frustrations about caring for patients who didn’t socially distance because they didn’t believe the virus was real. The hospital later shared her post on its website.

She complained that some people demand the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine and think the only patients who get really sick have underlying health problems.

“The majority of people don’t understand and can’t picture what we are seeing. That has been frustrating for all of us,” Montgomery said in an interview, adding: “It wears.”

Combating virus skeptics is a battle across the country.

In Georgia, at Augusta University Medical Center, visitors have tried to get around the mask requirement by wearing face coverings made of fishnet and other material with visible holes, something the hospital has dubbed “malicious compliance.” People also have shown up with video cameras in an attempt to collect proof the virus is a hoax, said Dr. Phillip Coule, the health system’s chief medical officer, who contracted the virus in July and has seen two staff members die.

“Just imagine that while you are caring for your own staff that are dying from this disease, and while you are trying to keep yourself safe, and you are trying to keep your family safe, and you are trying to deal with a disease that such little is known about, and then to have somebody tell you that it is all a hoax after you have been dealing with that all day,” he said. “Imagine the emotional distress that that causes.”

He said most skeptics — including some who have argued with him on Facebook — are converted to believers when they get sick themselves. And he is starting to hear fewer people dismiss the virus entirely since the president was diagnosed.

“It is unfortunate that the president has contracted the disease, but it is difficult for groups who support the president to be out there saying it doesn’t exist,” he said.

But he also said he

Nurses save mom and newborn after she gives birth while intubated for COVID-19

Jacklyn Rodriguez was 28 weeks pregnant when she was diagnosed with COVID-19.

Jacklyn Rodriguez was 28 weeks pregnant when she was diagnosed with COVID-19 and intubated. While sedated, nurses helped her give birth to her son 10 weeks early in an effort to save both of their lives.

“When they woke me up, and they told me the baby was born, I remember touching my stomach to feel like, ‘Wait, am I understanding what they’re saying?’” Rodriguez told ABC News.

Rodriguez said that when her COVID-19 symptoms worsened, she was admitted to Tufts Medical Center in Boston, where she was immediately transferred to the surgical intensive care unit and intubated.

“Even with forcing as much oxygen as we can into her, her oxygen levels are not staying high enough,” Angela Derochers, the nurse manager at Tufts Medical Center for OB-GYN, robotics and urology told ABC News. “And so we called the OB attending [physician] up, and he looked at me and he said, ‘We need to deliver this baby because they could both die.’”

“When they tell you that she’s really bad — ‘We got to do this now, if you don’t do this, she’s getting worse and both are going to be in danger’ — I couldn’t believe it, man. I was like, ‘Oh my god.’ I was nervous. I was really nervous,” said father and husband Raul Luzardo.

Derochers said: “I was just in shock. She was still intubated. … She literally had machines breathing for her and circulating her blood.”

Rodriguez was put on an ECMO machine to help pump blood through her body, so her heart and lungs could rest after the birth, according to Tufts hospital staff. Less than a day later, she woke up.

“I had no knowledge that he was being born. I was sedated,” she said. “It broke my heart a little bit, but it’s OK because I’m alive and he’s alive.”

Rodriguez, who was unable to meet her baby, named Julian, because she still tested positive for COVID-19, spent the next few weeks recovering.

“I was grateful to God to be alive. I was so grateful that he was OK. But not being able to hold him and be the first person to