health

State Lawmakers Pass Patient Protection Legislation

June 22, 2019 // 0 Comments

DC 37 members scored a major victory earlier this week when the State legislature passed legislation that protects patients from excessive hospital emergency room charges. Passage comes after intense lobbying by a coalition of patient advocates, consumer health and business organizations, and unions, including DC 37. The legislation would strengthen our state’s current Surprise Hospital Bills Law and shield patients from price gouging by hospitals, an issue that threatens to bankrupt working families. When emergencies have caused city employees – and DC 37 members – to go to hospitals out of their network, insurance companies eventually pass on the cost of care to patients – either in higher rates or reduced benefits. This legislation helps establish a process to negotiate fair payments for excessive emergency care charges. In a letter to lawmakers signed by leaders of the [More...]

The Battle of the Badges Has Begun

June 5, 2019 // 0 Comments

It’s on! A 12-week weight loss competition among four city agencies, dubbed The NYC Battle of the Badges, began June 3. Team up with your coworkers now to compete against other agencies and WW (Weight Watchers® reimagined) will donate up to $20,000 to a charity chosen by the winning agency. The four uniformed agencies participating in NYC Battle of the Badges are the Dept. of Corrections (DOC), Sanitation (DSNY), Fire (FDNY), and Police (NYPD). Participation is free and voluntary. Teams should consist of 8 to 10 people. The more people who sign up, the bigger the jackpot. To build the jackpot, WW (Weight Watchers® reimagined) will contribute $5 for every participant and $15 more for each new or current WW member who participates. The agency with the greatest percentage of teams achieving the six (6) percent average weight-loss goal wins. NYC Battle of the Badges is administered [More...]

Become a Wellness Champion: Free Classes and Programs for DC 37 Members

April 22, 2019 // 0 Comments

Did you know FREE Exercise Classes and FREE Smoking Cessation Programs are available at your city agency work location? These and many other valuable programs are available through WorkWell NYC to help you get and stay healthy. When DC 37 and other municipal employee unions negotiated improvements to your health insurance benefits, we placed an emphasis on prevention in order to avoid high hospital costs. High insurance costs limit our ability to negotiate for better raises and working conditions. It’s in all of our interests to get healthy so we can get a little bit more wealthy! Workshops include healthy eating, pre-diabetes support, mindfulness and stress reduction, and even financial planning, since money worries lead to health worries. Worksite fitness classes cover all levels of activity from Chair Yoga to Zumba. It’s a fun way to spend your lunch hour and to interact with [More...]

Health-Care of 350,000 Immigrants at Risk Under Trump’s Proposed Policy Changes

December 6, 2018 // 0 Comments

By GREGORY N. HEIRES DC 37 is working with a coalition of health-care advocates to try to stop the Trump administration from implementing a new policy that would cut more than $360 million in federal assistance for treating immigrant patients at NYC Health+Hospitals. President Donald Trump’s plan to slash federal assistance to immigrants deemed a fiscal burden to the state could affect as many as 350,000 immigrants who rely on NYC H+H for health-care coverage. The new policy would consider any immigrant deemed to be dependent on government assistance as a “public charge,” and ineligible for benefits. Today, only legal immigrants who use long-term care or welfare cash are considered burdens to the state. Expanding the meaning of “public charge” would jeopardize the government assistance of as many as 6.5 million American children nationwide, according to an Urban Institute [More...]

Dressing Blue to Promote Diabetes Awareness

November 20, 2018 // 0 Comments

  By DIANE S. WILLIAMS In November, many DC 37 members are wearing blue to mark Diabetes Awareness Month. “Diabetes is the biggest health epidemic of our time,” said Board of Education Employees Local 372 President Shaun D.  Francois I, who chairs the union’s Disability Advisory Committee. Our goal is to raise awareness and tackle the negative stigma surrounding diabetes,” Francois added, while speaking at a recent committee meeting. Diabetes 1, 2 or gestational diabetes develops when the pancreas cannot use or no longer makes insulin. If ignored or left undiagnosed, diabetes can cause neuropathy, blindness, heart attacks, strokes and coma that can lead to death. But diabetes is manageable and can be determined with a simple screening, according to the American Diabetes Association. “It’s important to get educated and see your doctor,” Francois said. [More...]

Union Speaks Out for Sick Time for WTC Heroes

October 18, 2018 // 0 Comments

By MIKE LEE In a recent hearing before the New York State Senate Civil Service and Pensions Committee, several DC 37 local leaders and members called upon legislators to give city workers the sick time they need as a result of the work they performed at the World Trade Center in the aftermath of 9/11. Earlier this year, the state Senate passed a bill to extend unlimited sick leave, now received by state and local first responders suffering from 9/11-related illnesses, to city workers. The bill has languished in the state Assembly. At the hearing, Local 2507 President Oren Barzilay, who leads more than 4,000 uniformed Emergency Medical Technicians, Paramedics and Fire Inspectors, testified that city agencies have made it difficult for sick members — who only earn one day of sick leave a month — to take time off. “Twelve days a year are not enough for our members who are sick from [More...]

Help is Available for 9/11 Claims

January 5, 2018 // 0 Comments

By MIKE LEE Were you there on Sept 11th? Did you work on the Ground Zero? Are you experiencing health issues from the attacks on the World Trade Center and need help filing a claim, but do not have an attorney? Help is here. The Sept. 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF), in conjunction with the New York Law School, has set up free clinics for individuals needing assistance filing a claim with the VCF. As a one-time consultation, volunteer law students or law school staffers will provide information on the application process and assist you in completing and submitting the on-line claim form (see link below). Sessions are on Friday, Jan. 26, with appointment times at 1 p.m., 2 p.m., and 3 p.m. and at 4 p.m. A second session is available on Tuesday, Jan. 30, with appointments for 4 p.m., 5 p.m., 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The New York Law School is located at 185 West Broadway, in downtown [More...]

Hospital Worker Wins $2,550 in Retro Pay

July 27, 2017 // 0 Comments

By DIANE WILLIAMS Serious illness almost cost Harlem Hospital Patient Care Associate Daniel Brewington his job. With help from his union, the Local 420 member is back at work — and receiving approximately $2,550 in retroactive longevity pay that a management snafu had denied him. After 22 years on the job, Brewington left Harlem Hospital on a medical leave that extended beyond one year. In accordance with NYC Health+Hospitals policy, the length of leave triggered termination of his employment. Brewington recovered and the hospital reinstated him in September 2015, after DC 37 attorneys brought his case before the NYC H+H Personnel Review Board (PERB). “The outcome of that hearing was favorable for Mr. Brewington and he got his job back, but NYC H+H managers failed to restore his longevity pay for years of service,” said union Council Rep Joel Viera Vera. So Viera Vera filed a [More...]

DC 37 Members and Community Activists Demand More Support for Public Hospitals

June 14, 2017 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS At a series of NYC Health+Hospitals annual meetings in May and June, hundreds of union members and residents sent a powerful message: Do more to save public hospitals! Activists reminded NYC H+H of its mission: to provide quality health care regardless of a patient’s ability to pay. As NYC H+H struggles to retain safe staffing levels, Leapfroggroup.com surveys show New York City’s public hospitals consistently provide better care than private hospitals. Employees said they work harder and longer with much less support, fewer supplies and dwindling staff due to attrition. “Working in constant crisis mode only leads to burnout,” said Nate Franco, a Local 768 member who spoke at Harlem Hospital’s packed forum on June 7. Dedicated NYC Health + Hospitals employees have staved off life-threatening outbreaks of Zika, Ebola, West Nile and Legionnaires disease, and [More...]

“Even Living in Less Than Ideal Circumstances, You Can Have a Healthy and Happy Baby”

June 11, 2017 // 0 Comments

Sandra Steiner, Nurse Home Visitor, Local 436 As a Nurse Home Visitor, there’s never a typical day on the job. I could be visiting a client at a homeless shelter, a foster home or Riker’s Island. People might think Riker’s is dangerous, but I actually feel safer there because they have lots of security. The clients we work with are first-time mothers. We begin providing supportive services when they are seven months pregnant until the baby is 2-years-old. I have a caseload of 15 clients that I visit twice a month. My clients live all over the city. We get referrals mostly from the Dept. of Homeless Services, the Prevention Assistance Temporary Housing program. There’s no typical client They can be as young as 12 and as old as 41. Sometimes they’re having twins or triplets. We make sure they follow up with their pre-natal appointments with their doctors. If they live in a [More...]