Hospital executives make millions without question. They want the Biden administration to restrict the salaries of traveling nurses. Here is my take.
Nurses deserve more pay than the executives
America is a capitalist country that purports to believe in supply and demand for just about every product and service. I do not think that all products and services should fall under that purview, but corporations are always preaching that. The indoctrination is that it leads to efficiency. Of course, if one has an accident or illness, supply-and-demand is not only immoral but the last thing on one’s mind.
During the pandemic, when nurses are in high demand, especially in places where many refuse to get vaccinated or follow safety protocols, their salaries follow all the capitalist rules for nurses willing to go on the road to follow the demand. Travel nurses’ salaries went from $1k+ per week to $2.5k per week.
What do these hospitals now want? They want the government to intervene in their “free markets” to cut nurses’ salaries.
During the pandemic, there have been both state and federal moves towards enacting legislation specifically aimed towards more regulation for staffing agencies and limiting travel nurse pay rates. Most recently, the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living, LeadingAge and a coalition of long-term care and senior living organizations sent a letter to White House officials warning against the “price gouging” happening in staffing agencies and how the practice is harmful to both patients and providers, who receive fixed reimbursement primarily through Medicare and Medicaid.
That letter was followed by another one, signed by 200 supporters, urging Congress to enlist federal agencies with competition and consumer protection authority to investigate the conduct of nurse staffing agencies to determine if it is the product of anticompetitive activity and/or violates consumer protection laws. The letter cited that nursing staffing agencies are sometimes taking as much as 40% of the fee collected from hospitals, adding that continuing to pay the high fees to staffing agencies is “ simply unsustainable.”
Supporters behind the movement to cap travel nurses’ pay say that the pandemic has thrust the need for more requirements for staffing agencies into a major spotlight and that ignoring the financial and regulatory issues brought on could lead to long-term impacts.
Long-term impacts? I sure hope so. Maybe they will realize that for-profit healthcare is a farce. One hopes to see healthcare as a humane service that should not fall under the capitalist system. Let’s hope we realize the promise of Medicare For All.
The hypocrisy is astounding. CEOs of large hospitals have an average salary of $1.4 million. The nurses, doctors, custodians, and others take risks as these parasites get wealthy from the intellect and service of others. Nurses to date are overworked and underpaid. If you want to save money, cut the administrators’ pay and stop paying significant dividends to freeloading healthcare stockholders.
Check out my books on our economic fraud, the necessity to engage the other side, and the creation of a real economy that serves us all. Subscribe to our YouTube Channel to help us get to 100,000 subscribers. Help us deliver the progressive message widely by joining our YouTube channel.