Yesterday the Outpost published a story about a new report prepared by the National Union of Healthcare Workers called “Uncompensated Care: How St. Joseph’s Low Wages Leave Caregivers Behind.” The report claims that employees at both St. Joseph Hospital in Eureka and Redwood Memorial Hospital in Fortuna are earning so little that it’s pushing them into economic instability, increasing risks to public health and causing patient safety concerns.

Today, the Outpost received the following response from David O’Brien, M.D., president of both Redwood Memorial and St. Joseph Hospitals:

We deeply value the great work our nurses and our entire staff do every day to provide compassionate and quality care to our community. For this reason, we have long recognized their dedication by offering fair and competitive wages and benefits, while also working together to meet the new challenges of the healthcare environment. Our patients and our community count on St. Joseph Health, Humboldt County to operate as efficiently as possible at a time when hospitals are getting paid less to do more. Yet, we have always held to our values and upheld the dignity of our employees by providing them a just and competitive compensation and benefits package.