Nurses union, NLRB file complaint about NOCH labor practices

A complaint from the union that represents registered nurses at North Ottawa Community Hospital has been filed by the National Labor Relations Board, stating the Grand Haven hospital has refused to provide the Michigan Nurses Association with confidential information regarding the dismissal of a NOCH nurse.
Mark Brooky
May 26, 2011


“We are frustrated with the lack of respect being shown by the hospital toward its nurses,” Sherry Thelen, president of the NOCH RN Staff Council, said in a statement released Wednesday. “The grievance procedure is something both parties have agreed to abide by — and the fact that the hospital is dragging its feet in providing MNA with the requested information is unprofessional behavior. Every minute we spend having to hold NOCH accountable for its actions is a distraction to our primary role (of) providing quality patient care.”

NOCH spokeswoman Jen VanSkiver said the MNA requested patient records as part of a labor arbitration specifically related to the discharge of one registered nurse, who is represented by the labor union, and the issue is not widespread.

According to the MNA, the complaint states three major concerns:
— The hospital has unreasonably delayed in providing certain requested information to the union.
— The hospital has failed to furnish the information requested by the union in a timely manner; and, when it was finally provided, all the dates were redacted.
— The hospital has refused to bargain with MNA toward an arrangement regarding confidential information.

The National Labor Relations Board has charged that this conduct violates sections of the National Labor Relations Act.

A hearing has been scheduled for July 13 in Grand Rapids.

“NOCH has explained to MNA that HIPAA and Michigan state law severely limit the amount of information from patient records that hospitals can give to a third party such as MNA, including dates of service,” said VanSkiver, chief communications officer for the North Ottawa Community Health System. “Protecting patient privacy has and will always be of paramount importance to this hospital. As a result, NOCH is committed to maintaining the privacy of its patient information.”

VanSkiver said the identities of patients involved and the dates of care are irrelevant to the reasons for the discharge of the nurse, who was not named.

To read more of this story, see today’s print edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.



NOCH needs to look at its management!

King Ding

If you go to NOCH you either get a ten hour wait in the ER; or you get released in a body bag. The hospital is a joke and a waste.


NOCH used to be one of the finest hospitals in West Michigan. They used to treat and admit some of the toughest medical and traumatic cases. But with being pushed around by the big guys... Like Spectrum and MPC.... or getting the medical doctors to come to Grand Haven... and now they admit those patients to Muskegon Hospitals. What people don't understand that most of these doctors that work at NOCH are somehow affiliated with Spectrum or the Muskegon Grps. including your ER doctors... that "King Ding" claims will release you in a body bag. what an idiot. So many of these doc's live in our area because they like the schools, housing, the other great things the tri cities brings to our area. Not many of them can say they were born, and raised in the tri-cities area... grew up here went to college and medical school and moved back to this community. Many good doctors have been chance away by these big hospital groups... making promises they can't keep... becuase the insurance companies...........Yes NOCH board really needs to a look at some of the middle management filled positions... many of these people have no connection to the community... and don't live in the community.

Now for the real issue with this article... First of all knowing NOCH history for disciplining employees... they must have a long paper trail on this employee... Hire some of kids coming out of nursing school... They don't argue, normally don't log sick... and are willing to work just about anything.... Those RN's remind me of a bunch of ten year school teachers.


Has to control self here but well,ok Lawrence sit back with your popcorn because a bag of chips you are not.The comment about the employee Must of had a long paper trail and go hire the New kids on the block really got to me.
Apparently You have Not taken care of people all of your life and then when Your the one being scrutinized all of a sudden there is no help for you.All those years of no Holidays off,working weekends,working Mandatory Overtime,You have no life as a Nurse,You miss family time,memory time,you miss so much because of what you chose to do.One thing I will tell you about the New and upcoming Nurses is they will not take the crap we older Nurses have taken for years,they leave,they quit and go into another career.
So who will take care of you someday??They are smarter then we were as they do not the believe in the bs brainwashing all Nurses get while being educated.The Florence Nightingale bit where we stay and take it for our patients.

School teacher my umm,arse,Wish I had been a school teacher,summers off,holidays off,work monday thru friday,nice pension,retirement benefits,ooolala what a nice life.
Nurses get spit on,sworn at,injured in the line of work by doing their duties and by patients that just decided to twist a hand and break fingers and what do we get in return by our employer?

Some callous lets Clean House this week bs where they let good nurses go to make way for the New that do not stay.We do not get back the care or love that we try daily to give to our patients,we get beaten down to the point we sit and wonder about all those years and our self worth destroyed just because we became Nurses.

So Lawrence why don't you say a prayer for that Nurse that was let go so quickly and unfairly and for all the Nurses that will follow her the same way and pray North Ottawa gets better manners towards their employees who have sacrificed for their money making establishment because if this nastiness does not stop someday ,one day Nurses will get backbones like cops and others that get blue flu in big citys and say enough and across this Usa there will be a White Flu( Major walkout) because if no one cares about us,why should we continue to care about them.

King Ding

I'm an idiot but you blame people dyeing because there is no connection to the community...and oh by the way get school graduates to increase the skilled positions aptitude and operational efficiency...I'ts obvious Lawrence has had his head worked on by NOCH.


Kinda likes King Ding,ha...


Agrees with Quinn and with Lawrence,(yes you ) on a lot of what they said about management and the docs not being local.


Ohhh Lawrence,I have such WONDERFUL News...So I guess you can umm,choke on this now.The employee in question was cleared by the State of Michigan,Sooo will you eat your words now? So while NOCH stalled for over a year putting that employees life right down in the crapper,No Money coming,No no no no everything but Tons of hardship for them and their family,they have been vindicated by the state,So maybe the Union was right and just in thier complaint???? Ya, they were right for sure.God I hope this employee listened to me and seeks a lawyer and does not sink into the Nurse mentality of protecting and caring for others,NOCH sure did not care about them.Does the Happy Dance of Nurses that have been done wrong BUT eventually show everyone WHO was wrong.I still remember the day they saved a life in a grand haven bingo hall,people would be crushed to learn it is them that has been persecuted.Growls and Leaves.


What part of HIPAA do you people not understand? How would you feel if it was your medical records they wanted to settle a labor dispute? Good for NOCH for making patient privacy its number one priority.


Hi Michael,
The HIPPA laws do not have much to do with this.It is Not about patient privacy but NOCH dragging their heels to settle an employee dispute and unfair labor practices with their employees.How would you feel if you were unjustly let go from your job and have a union to do arbitration but your employer just doesnt show up for the arbitration meetings over and over again.It's about unfair labor ,employer conduct in a grievance.How would you feel if you are the one with no income? How would you feel as you wait on everything for a year ? It is just another slap in the face from NOCH.....


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