For Tuesday, June 26, 2012, 3:00 p.m. EST
Contact: Jeff Hall, 617-281-8384, firstname.lastname@example.org
BOSTON, MA – Hundreds of 1199SEIU members are expected to rally on the State House steps on Tuesday, June 26 as the union works to improve the payment reform bill currently under consideration by a legislative conference committee. Legislators, allies, and healthcare employers including Steward CEO Ralph de la Torre are expected to join the workers as they call for the new payment reform law to include increased Medicaid reimbursement rates, funding for workforce training, and other provisions.
WHO: Healthcare workers, 1199SEIU Executive Vice President Veronica Turner, Steward CEO Ralph de la Torre, State Representative Carlos Henriquez
WHAT: Rally to support the inclusion of Medicaid funding increases, funding for workforce training, and other provisions in healthcare payment reform legislation
WHEN: Tuesday, June 26, 3:00 p.m.
WHERE: Steps of the Massachusetts State House, Beacon Street, Boston, MA
WHY: Union members say the new law should immediately increase Medicaid reimbursement rates for community and safety net hospitals. Caregivers say that doing so would help stem ‘cost-shifting’ to privately insurance consumers – a pattern resulting from government under-payments to hospitals.
Caregivers are also advocating for the bill to require an investment in healthcare training to assist workers whose jobs may be impacted by the new reforms. Union members are calling for the final bill to include a “Healthcare Workforce Transformation Fund” to help incumbent healthcare workers train for the jobs of the future within the industry. While caregivers say the exact number of jobs that will be affected by the bill is unclear, it is clear that many care delivery models will change.
1199SEIU members are supportive of the overall goals of payment reform and want to ensure the final legislation takes a balanced approach to cost control – one that does not jeopardize patient access or place undue strain on already struggling community and safety net hospitals.
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Representing more than 46,000 healthcare workers throughout Massachusetts, and 370,000 workers in Massachusetts, New York, Maryland, New Jersey, Florida, and Washington, D.C., 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. Our mission is to achieve affordable, high quality healthcare for all. 1199SEIU is part of the 2.1 million member Service Employees International Union.