To the Journal editor:
I have been a per deim (part time) respiratory therapist at Marquette General Hospital/Duke LifePoint for the last seven years with a professional history of 20-plus years. This does allow me to be able to enjoy my many hobbies and yet give great care to my patients when at work.
I was very excited when I first heard about Duke Lifepoint coming to the area as I felt it would give a boost the healthcare of the Upper Peninsula. While I still believe this is the case, I am worried about recent staffing policies that have taken place.
It seems that the bean counters are staffing each department with less and less personnel and yet wanting more and more out of them. I am seeing good, long-time staff leaving or taking on a second job in order to keep the bills paid at home. All of this has a direct patient care effect and add even more stress to the workplace.
If Duke LifePoint is trying to keep the flow of patients from leaving the area to seek healthcare, this isn't the way to do it.
I am in a position that I am not fearful of losing my job to speak out about patient care, while most of my peers are not so lucky. There are ways to cut cost without it becoming a patient care issue.
While I accept change is needed having a fearful staff isn't, in my opinion, a good way to go about it. With that it will be interesting to see what happens to me if this is printed in the paper.
With that I hope my opinion does not effect any of my co-workers in any adverse way as I am speaking on my behalf only.
I feel I am lucky to work with such a great caring group of professionals from all departments
Peter D. Sheret, R.R.T.