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Kaiser Manteca nurses taking hospital concerns to Del Webb folks

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POSTED October 11, 2013 10:46 p.m.

 Kaiser Manteca nurses are pounding the pavement today at Woodbridge at Del Webb to share with the residents their concerns about the state of health services at the West Yosemite Avenue medical facility.

California Nurses Association labor representative Kevin Hall said the Kaiser-Manteca nurses will be knocking on doors this morning. The door-to-door foot campaign will begin with a 30-minute group assembly at the Manteca Fire Station No. 4, 1465 W. Lathrop Road west of Union Road before the nurses start walking around the age-restricted neighborhood.

Explaining why it was important to bring their message to this retirement community in Manteca, Hall said, “Many retirees purchased their homes in the upscale neighborhood with the understanding that the Kaiser hospital was only five minutes away. In a neighborhood canvas earlier this week, nurses talked with more than 50 residents, most of whom expressed their deep concern about the cuts in service and delays in care and their opposition to being transferred to Modesto.”

Today’s foot campaign at Del Webb is the prelude to Sunday’s community forum at First Christian Church, 1125 N.Union Road (corner Louise Avenue) starting at 4 p.m. The forum is designed to discuss the cutbacks in services that have been gradually taking place since the beginning of this year at Kaiser in Manteca, how some of the changes have impacted Manteca ambulance services, among other issues. The nurses said their concern is to keep Manteca safe and to pressure Kaiser not to close its Manteca facility. The meeting is open to the public.

According to the nurses, Kaiser in Manteca has gradually closed or stopped providing health care services at the Manteca facility, moving some of them to Kaiser in Modesto and other out-of-town locations. Among the hospital procedures that have been stopped and are no longer available at the Manteca facility, they say, include ultrasound services after 5 p.m., knee and hip-replacement procedures, colonoscopy and endoscopy for in-patients, and stress tests on tread mill. These are no longer provided at the hospital in Manteca because the specialists have been moved to the Modesto Kaiser facility.

In response to the nurses’ claims about an impending closure of the Kaiser hospital in Manteca, Corwin Harper who is the senior vice president and area manager of the hospital’s Central Valley area assured that Kaiser is not closing its Manteca facility.

Corwin called the nurses’ claims about the gradual closure of the Manteca facility and cutbacks in services as “exaggerated,” and “distorted facts” and that what they are doing is “just part of an ongoing labor dispute” with union leaders.

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