By C. Gathright, Registered Nurse TCU
The consultant team, Cambio has proposed that the nurse/patient ratio be changed from 1:3 to 1:4 in the Transitional Care Unit (TCU). There was no tour of the unit or assessment of the patients done by the consultants. No input was solicited from the staff who work in this unit. There were no statistics presented to justify this staff reduction. Cambio bases its service cuts on “proprietary statistics” which they refuse to share, even with the Board of Trustees.
Many people are upset with Cambio for these proposed cuts, but the real responsibility lies with the Alameda County Board of Trustees. It is their ethical and moral responsibility to ensure the safety of the Medical Center’s patients. Have they forgotten that they are making life and death decisions when they cut medical services? Many of the patients in TCU are very sick and should actually be in Intensive Care Unit. The 1:3 ratio ensures that these patients are properly and safely cared for.
The Board of Trustees has already shown the employees of the Medical Center how little they value their work by approving huge staff cuts and by neglecting the day-to-day management of the Medical Center. We wish that ensuring the safety of patients in TCU were as worthy an expense to the Board of Trustees as the consultants they continue to spend millions of dollars on.