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October 2, 2012
Chief Executive Officer
Jackson Health System
1611 NW 12th Avenue
Miami, FL 33136-1094
Dear Mr. Migoya:
On behalf of the dedicated healthcare givers of Jackson Health System, I am compelled to respond to your recent email to employees.
We know that you are not familiar with who we are or the miracles we perform everyday on behalf of our patients, but the misinformation you have been spreading — mainly written by your Corporate Director for External Affairs Matthew Pinzur — must be corrected. Perhaps this type of practice is commonplace in the banking industry, but to the caregivers who work tirelessly to uphold the mission of Jackson, it is offensive. We are scientists; we deal with facts.
Let me point out just three of several false statements you made during Miami-County Commissioners’ public budget hearing on September 20th:
- “The Emergency Room at Jackson is not a teaching Emergency Room. It is not an academic, teaching Emergency Room…” – This statement is patently false. To best remind you of the teaching that occurs in Jackson’s ER, let me quote from one of your own Jackson physicians, Dr. Winifred Filli, who recently wrote a Miami Herald Letter to the Editor on this very subject. “To say that Jackson Health System’s emergency physicians do not teach is untrue,” wrote Dr. Filli. “Rotating through the Emergency Department on a monthly basis are emergency medicine residents … interns from the Departments of Surgery and Medicine, medical students from NOVA Southeastern and University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and nurse practitioner and physician’s assistant students. We discuss all aspects of care from first contact with the patient to discharge or admission. We teach them how to resuscitate a patient in cardiac arrest, how to care for someone having an acute stroke or heart attack and how to request social services help for our homeless and elderly. Not only do we provide this kind of non-didactic teaching, but we also give lectures, conferences, labs, demonstrations, case discussions for our residents and students. The Jackson ED attending physicians are definitely part of the teaching mission.”
- “Today, we’re down to 16 percent uninsured versus 30 percent…” – The uninsured rate fell from 16.83% in April 2011 to 14.70% in August 2012, according to Jackson’s financial statements.
- “Our length of stay has improved by more than a day…” – It has actually gotten worse, rising from 6.33 days in April 2011 to 6.56 days August 2012, according to JHS.
You are misleading the public on the operations of our public hospital. May I remind you of the Truth in Governance ordinance of Miami-Dade County’s Home Rule Charter: “No county or municipal official or employee shall knowingly furnish false information on any public matter, nor knowingly omit significant facts when giving requested information to members of the public.”
Perhaps we can help educate you on what goes on within the walls of Jackson. As caregivers, we all must complete continuing education requirements in order to stay on top of our respective professions, so we would be happy to meet with you for an inservice program where we could educate you on the operations of Jackson.
Since taking the helm of our public hospital, you have been relying on your financial expertise, but your actions are unilaterally killing Jackson. Please work with us to save our public jewel.
Martha Baker, RN
SEIU Local 1991
CC: Financial Recovery Board Members
Miami-Dade County Commissioners
Miami-Dade Legislative Delegation