Nurses and healthcare workers at Palomar Medical Center protest layoffs

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Protesting, outside of Palomar Medical Center in Poway, we’re about 3 dozen of the 221 healthcare workers who have been temporarily laid off.

“We got hit the notice last week.  We’re laid off for at least 21 days,” said Christina Turner a registered nurse.

The temporary layoffs are a result of Palomar Health having to suspend all non-emergency services due to COVID-19 safety precautions.

Healthcare workers are upset especially since Palomar announced the opening of a 250 bed hospital within another facility in Escondido that will be used as a FEMA field hospital.

“We really don’t understand. Why can’t we be cross trained to work there? We’ll pretty much anything rt now.”

Even more concerning is the potential loss of health coverage if the temporary layoff become permanent .

“I’m one year out — a breast cancer survivor.  I need insurance.”

In response to the temporary layoff’s, Palomar Health’s CEO Diane Henson sent us a statement. Part of it reads as follows:

“It was not an easy decision and was only done after much consideration and many other measures.

The health and well-being of our employees is important to us and we expect to bring our Palomar Health family back to work as quickly as possible. “

Palomar Health also stated safety patient care is top priority and that temporary layoffs will not impact any positions related to inpatient bedside care.

Categories: Coronavirus, Good Morning San Diego, Health, Local San Diego News