UNAC/UHCP Testifies Against Prime Healthcare’s Expansion in Victor Valley
At a hearing in Victorville on August 17, we urged the California State Attorney General not to approve the sale of Victor Valley Community Hospital to Prime Healthcare. Prime owns Garden Grove Hospital and Chino Valley Medical Center. Nurses, families of patients victimized by Prime, community groups, doctors and other unions all packed Victorville City Hall to oppose Prime.
Garden Grove Registered Nurses’ Association President Helen Bouman, RN, and UNAC/UHCP Staff Attorney Lisa Demidovich both testified about Prime Healthcare’s unlawful and damaging treatment of its RNs at Garden Grove and CVMC.
“At Garden Grove Hospital, Prime let all the insurance contracts lapse,” said Bouman. “If they do that here, where are people going to go?”
“Prime proposed massive cuts for RNs in pay and benefits to grow the Prime Empire at the expense of the Garden Grove community,” Demidovich testified.
“Chino Valley RNs voted overwhelmingly for representation by UNAC/UHCP,” she continued, “but Prime has ignored that decision and entered into a four-front legal battle to avoid its legal obligation to bargain with the RNs.”
“Selling Victor Valley Community Hospital to Prime is decidedly not in the public interest.”
Testimony on Prime’s practice of trapping patients in its hospitals for lengthy, expensive stays came from local doctors and the family of a patient who died at Prime’s Desert Valley Hospital. Diagnosed with leukemia, she had a transfer order to another hospital for chemotherapy which Prime refused, instead kicking the patient’s mother out of the hospital. The mother was keeping vigil in the parking lot when her daughter died.
The Attorney General’s decision is expected around September 14.