OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) – The Atla Bates Summit Medical Center is facing more than $150,000 worth of fines after a Cal/OSHA investigation into the death of a nurse.
Janine Paiste-Ponder passed away in July.
KRON4 spoke to a nurse who says these issues started long before their co-worker died and they’re hoping these fines will help correct the issues.
“I think Sutter needs to take responsibility for this. This did not need to happen. Janine’s death,” Michael Hill, R.N., said.
More than 7 months after nurse Janine Paiste-Ponder died from contracting COVID-19 on the job.
Cal/OSHA has fined Sutter Health’s Alta Bates Summit Medical Center more than $155,000.
A vigil was held for Paiste-Ponder this summer.
The reports says there were numerous, serious COVID-related workplace safety violations.
“Lack of personal protective equipment, improper staffing for COVID types of patients,” Hill said.
Registered nurse Michael Hill with the California Nurses Association says those are just some of the issues.
The report says others include not being notified of exposure and failure to provide testing.
“The hospital should not have been surprised that this was going to happen because we had been voicing our concerns for so long,” Hill said.
KRON4 reached out to Sutter Health about the Cal/OSHA fines, a spokesperson said:
“We disagree with Cal/OSHA’s findings and immediately appealed the citations. None of the findings are specific to the passing of our beloved colleague. We continue to mourn her loss and are disappointed that her memory is being used for political gain.”
Hill says while some things have improved over the past few months — They’re still meeting with the hospital about their concerns.
Nurses say the PPE situation has improved but they still are very short-staffed and that makes it difficult to care for COVID patients.