The local Nurses Union JNESO has been busy prior to the proposed public hearing of the HUMC sale on July 21st. They have been spotted handing out flyers this week near the PATH station warning against Bayonne Medical Group from taking over the HUMC. Here is a letter from them dated 7-7-2011 that breaks out what impact the sale of HUMC Holdco will have on their membership. It is a bit brutal but the current financials of the hospital are also brutal. The Hospital has bled money before the creation of the HUMC and ever since it was formed. Everyone in the union technically will lose their job and then have to re-apply and only 75% are guaranteed their job as per the current deal. Yes, this is the reality of this transaction for them.
If somehow a magic wand could be waved and make the insurance carriers pay the Hospital above or at least cost for most services and patient demand again to magically fill all hospital beds then Hoboken would not be in this mess. But that is fantasy. At some point the community as a whole has to accept that there might simply not be enough demand for services to have to the hospital run as it is currently. Due to its geographical constraints, Hoboken should have and acute care facility and a quality ER. I never thought Hoboken should have footed the whole bill when over half of the people who use the hospital don't live in Hoboken. With the Hospital being merged, perhaps they will have the leverage to get better rates. If you want to save jobs that is how it gets done.
Since true Nationally run Health care isn't a politically viable option and Hoboken can't afford another round of financing for a financially unviable standalone hospital, privatization and a merger is the only way this can possibly get done. Local municipalities can't print money and the state stabilization funds won't get the hospital though this year. According to a source, The HUMC hasn't paid it electrical bill to PSEG for a very long time. Do the Union members of JNESO think that PSEG utility workers shouldn't get paid because the Hospital jobs need to be saved? Welcome to the harsh reality of trying to run a hospital in this current political and economic climate.
Link to Letter: http://www.jneso.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/HUMC-letter-to-member-july-7-2011.pdf
Link to Local Union JNESO: http://www.jneso.org/wp/