Health care workers at 2 Crozer Health hospitals secure a new contract

The exterior of Delaware County Memorial Hospital in Drexel Hill

Delaware County Memorial Hospital in Drexel Hill. (DCMH/Facebook)

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While the future of Crozer Health, the four-hospital system in Delaware County, is still in a period of uncertainty, a group of health care workers within the system have recently secured their first contract.

More than 80 technical specialists at Delaware County Memorial Hospital (DCMH) and Taylor Hospital have come to an agreement with Prospect Medical Holdings, Crozer’s parent company, after 14 months of negotiations.

“We’ve combined the two hospitals because they have a larger amount of people. And we figured if we did both of them together, that we’d be able to ratify this contract sooner,” said Phyllis Rozner, a clinical nutritionist at DCMH.

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The employees, known as Taylor/DCMH Employees United, are joining the DCMH-based Delaware County Nurses Association and Delaware County Technical Employees Association as affiliates of the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals (PASNAP).

PASNAP represents roughly 1,200 health care workers within Crozer. The union’s various locals have been at the forefront of rallies calling attention to Crozer’s service shutdown spree.

This local’s new contract includes a wage scale with increases of 16% to 25% over the life of the contract, improvements to the retirement plan, more money for employee education and certifications, as well as protections against cancellations to maintain appropriate staffing in the hospitals.

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The social worker, clinical nutritionists, speech therapists, physical therapists, occupational therapists, laboratory technicians, and radiology technologists covered under the contract believe that it will improve retention and patient care.

“I think it will help [us] have better communication with management and also helps us have some backup. Also, I think it helps with some patient care issues. Overall, I think it’s a very good thing,” said Monique McHugh, a radiology technologist at Taylor Hospital and a member of the union’s bargaining committee.

With the possible sale of Crozer to ChristianaCare still in limbo, Rozner said that it has been difficult working in the hospital as services have been slashed.

“Delaware County Memorial has gone through, I think, the worst of the changes that Prospect has accomplished in the system. They removed most of our departments. We no longer have doctors coming to visit aside from just the hospitalists and maybe cardiologist,” Rozner said.

There is just one active floor in DCMH. There used to be 200 beds. Rozner said that the latest census has that number at around 25.

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