Healthcare workers from Chicago hospitals rally over alleged dangerous staffing crisis

Safety net hospitals provide critical services to low-income communities

Evelyn Holmes Image
Thursday, July 20, 2023
Chicago safety net hospital workers rally over alleged staffing crisis
Healthcare workers from Saint Bernard, Loretto and Roseland Hospital rallied Thursday over an alleged dangerous staffing crisis.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Frontline workers from three Chicago hospitals are rallying over what they claim is a staffing crisis that endangers the safety of patients.

The workers are from Roseland, Saint Bernard and Loretto hospitals.

They are sounding the alarm, claiming dangerously low staffing levels and inadequate wages for workers at Chicago's safety net hospitals are making it hard for medical staff to provide quality health care to the community.

These frontline hospital workers gathered outside a South Side medical center on 111th Street for a rally Thursday afternoon to demand action.

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Safety net hospitals are medical facilities that provide health care and critical services to low-income communities, where many of the patients are either enrolled in Medicaid public health insurance or have no medical insurance at all.

The workers' demonstration comes a day after some staff at Loretto Hospital on the city's West Side delivered a 10-day strike notice to the hospital's administration, calling for what they call better worker pay and more investments.

On Thursday afternoon, workers wanted lawmakers to make the $100 million in funds available through the Health Equity and Access and Leadership, or HEAL, grant program they approved last spring available to keep safety net hospitals operating.

The workers at safety net hospitals are also calling for more transparency regarding the grant program in order to make sure the funding is going to the hospitals in communities with the greatest need.