Letters to the Editor

Don’t cut the nurses

I read with feelings of anxiety in the Feb. 13 paper of the 26 layoffs at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital. I hate to see good people lose jobs, especially at a time when jobs are hard to come by. Rebalance of a workforce is often necessary due to changes in technology, mission configuration or availability and utilization of other services. And, in the process, sometimes good people have to go.

I felt better as I read that no nursing positions will be cut. That shows good judgment on the part of the hospital management. Nurses are the heartbeat of health care. Any hospital stay for a patient is only as good as its nursing staff. Nurses are dedicated people with personal and professional attributes that enable them to serve in positions of vital responsibility that affect the lives of other people. Not just anyone or everyone can perform the work they are entrusted with. Nursing is a proud profession that demands first rate quality people.

Any hospital that would cut its nursing staff would be cutting off its own right arm. When personnel cuts have to be made, let good judgment and wise discretion not fail.

Frank B. Austin, O’Fallon