The New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA) filed three lawsuits Monday challenging the failure of the New York State Department of Health (DOH) and two hospitals to protect the health and safety of nurses treating COVID-19 patients.
The NYSNA claimed that the DOH, Montefiore Medical Center and Westchester Medical Center compromised the health and safety of their nurses for not providing impermeable gowns and other personal protection equipment, failing to provide safe working conditions for high-risk employees, and not properly training registered nurses redeployed from hospital units.
NYSNA Executive Director Pat Kane stated that “more than seven in ten of our nurses are reporting exposure to COVID-19 and most are still untested.” Kane said the lawsuits were filed to protect nurses, patients, and communities from “grossly inadequate and negligent protections.”
The suit seeks to restore safe working conditions for nurses and their patients and enforce Governor Andrew Cuomo’s April 13 directive that each direct care nurse be given at least one N95 respirator daily.
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