The professional employees who perform the lab tests at Warren General Hospital will participate in a committee to review lab's work but remain opposed to outsourcing.
Ed Grystar, a staff representative for the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals (PASNAP) said Friday that lab employees will take part in a forum, created by the hospital, to review the process of possibly outsourcing lab services at WGH. Physicians and administration members will also participate, he said.
"It's something they should have done six months ago, long before they tried to force their outsourcing proposal on the PASNAP members in the lab," said Grystar.
Union members cried fowl a couple weeks ago as they learned that WGH planned to send up to 188,000 lab tests currently done by professional lab employees at the hospital to for-profit health corporations.
In rebuttal, hospital officials disputed any negative effects on patient care and maintained that the mandates of national health care reform are forcing health institutions to evaluate processes for cost-effectiveness.
Grystar said, "There's still negotiations going on but they have been put to the side while the committee meets."
Union members and representatives continue to question the decision to outsource
"We do believe they are too many unanswered questions," Grystar said. "We don't know what the problem is in the lab; it's making money."
He added, "Based on incomplete information received at the negotiating table and the potential negative impact this outsourcing could have on the community, the membership of PASNAP felt it had no other option but to contact local physicians and inform the public. We stand by our decision."