EyeOnBI.org is part of an effort to return Beth Israel Deaconess to its founding principles and ensure that the administration is putting the interests of patients, workers and community members first. Read more




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Tuesday
Mar232010

BIDMC Employees Struggle to Provide Healthcare for their Families

One out of every six Boston jobs is in a hospital setting, which means that the hospital industry sets the tone for all other employers and, ultimately, the entire city economy.

To ensure that Boston’s working families are able to have secure lives, raise healthy children, and send them to college, our caregivers must have high quality jobs. Yet many Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center workers struggle to provide for their families.

A total of 1,367 Beth Israel workers and their dependents relied on tax payer funded health insurance in 2008, an increase of 17% since 2007. This cost Massachusetts taxpayers $1.8 million, a 50% increase from the prior year. This runs counter to statewide trends – the Massachusetts Taxpayer Federation recently found that private coverage accounts for nearly half of the newly insured since passage of health care reform.

As one of the largest employers in Boston, Beth Israel Deaconess should take a leadership role in offering jobs with dignity, fair living wages, affordable health insurance for caregivers and their children, and retirement security. It is not only low-wage workers who lack workplace rights and respect. Physicians and residents also deserve high quality jobs. Recently, a lawsuit was filed by a leading Boston physician accusing BIDMC and Paul Levy of gender discrimination and retaliation. In addition, an accreditation organization cited the hospital because resident surgeons were working 90 hours a week, in violation of national safety rules.