Cleveland Clinic, Indian River Hospital Case Management employees, comprised of social workers and RN’s are alleging that they are not being treated fairly. Their primary complaints include not receiving proper PPE, COVID patients being mixed in with non-COVID patients, being short-staffed, and unfair pay.
Case management employees are alleging that they have not seen an N95 face mask, even though they are going into rooms of patients.
“Shouldn’t every employee who comes in contact with patients have an N95 Mask, regardless of the unit,” an anonymous employee asked Sebastian Daily.
“What about all of the patients who pass through the emergency room, before we even know they’re COVID positive or the visitors that come in and may not be forthcoming,” they added.
Scott Samples, MS, Senior Director of Communications for Cleveland Clinic Florida Region, said safety is their top priority for patients and caregivers.
“We are continuing to follow national and international guidelines regarding the use of PPE, and we maintain an ample supply of PPE at all locations,” Samples told Sebastian Daily.
“Caregivers are given the appropriate PPE, which includes N95 masks when caring for COVID-positive patients or patients who are suspected to have COVID. All caregivers in patient care areas are required to wear a face shield or goggles and a surgical mask,” Samples added.
A nurse for Cleveland Clinic in Vero Beach said they were recently informed that patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 but display no symptoms would be put on regular floors with patients who do not have the virus.
“So, as soon as a nurse leaves out of a COVID positive patient’s room, they could go to their next patient’s room and expose them,” the source explained.
Samples said the hospital has taken a number of steps to reduce COVID transmission risks in their facilities, including cohorting of patients on inpatient floors and within their emergency departments.
“We have also implemented visitation policies to minimize the number of people in our facilities. That includes limited visitation to inpatient units and no visitors in the Emergency Department unless a patient requires special assistance,” he said.
Nurses in the case management department in Cleveland Clinic’s Vero Beach location are claiming to be extremely short-staffed. They allege losing employees due to mistreatment by the administration and the department director.
However, throughout the pandemic, Samples says they have been able to maintain appropriate staff levels.
“In addition, we have an interactive process in place to determine options for caregivers in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act or the Family Medical Leave Act,” he explained.
A social worker says that Cleveland Clinic does not provide holiday pay, time and a half, or holiday compensation.
“Cleveland brags in emails about how much money they made the previous year! Our department is extremely short-staffed, and we keep losing people due to mistreatment by the administration and our department director,” the social worker told Sebastian Daily.
The frustrated healthcare workers are alleging that they sometimes have to work six days straight due to being short-staffed, and they are not receiving compensation for it.
Allegedly, they do not receive holiday compensation and never received any COVID merit pay.
“Us nurses and social workers are all being made to work almost every weekend! No two days off in a row, which creates very stressful situations. We are tired,” an employee stated.
Cleveland Clinic told Sebastian Daily they have been committed to maintaining all of their caregivers’ pay and benefits.
“We have undertaken many other efforts to support our caregivers and will continue to do so through as we continue to manage this global pandemic,” Samples said.
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