Rhode Island Hospital

Doctors who want more experience treating addiction can apply for a new training program at Rhode Island Hospital. The hospital has just won accreditation from the American Board of Addiction Medicine for a new fellowship – one of just 27 addiction medicine fellowships in the country.

The Teamsters Union Local 251 and Rhode Island Hospital management have reached a tentative agreement on a four-year contract that the union says will bring $19 million in improved wages and benefits to workers at the Lifespan hospital network.

The agreement was reached late Friday evening, according to a statement by the union bargaining committee posted on social media.

Negotiations continue between Rhode Island Hospital and employees with the Teamsters union. The latest round of talks ended in another stalemate.

The Teamsters represent about 2500 nursing assistants, food service, and other workers at Rhode Island Hospital. They’ve threatened to strike if negotiators can’t agree on job protections and wage hikes, as well as improvements to their retirement plan.

Brain researchers are hoping more Rhode Islanders will enroll in the state’s Alzheimers Disease prevention registry. The goal is to find candidates for clinical trials to find new therapies for Alzheimers.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Workers at Rhode Island Hospital have threatened to strike as contract negotiations reach an impasse. A federal mediator has been called in to help broker a deal between the hospital and members of the Teamsters union. The Teamsters represent certified nurses’ assistants and unit assistants, people who help care for patients.

What could a strike mean for patients and employees? Rhode Island Public Radio’s health care reporter Kristin Gourlay joins host Dave Fallon to sort through the issues.

Members of the Teamsters union working at Rhode Island Hospital voted Wednesday evening to authorize a strike. Don’t expect to see picket lines immediately.

The vote simply gives union leadership the authority to give the hospital 10 days' notice before striking. But members could walk off the job in a couple of weeks if they don’t reach a new contract deal with hospital management. A federal mediator has been called in, according to hospital officials.

Dr. Stanley Aronson, the founding dean of Brown University’s Alpert School of Medicine, a prolific writer, advocate for community organizations and one of Rhode Island’s most prominent public intellectuals,  died this morning. He was 92.

Aronson, whose career spanned more than 70 years, was a world-renowned doctor, medical researcher and leader in medical education. A genial, generous man, Aronson served as mentor to generations of physicians and medical students.

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The Rhode Islander who was the fifth American to return to the US to be treated for Ebola, is virus-free. Doctors say he will be released from isolation this morning.

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The mother of the Rhode Islander diagnosed with Ebola says she first learned their son might have Ebola early Thursday morning. Diana Mukpo said when she first got the call, her heart sank. Then the fear set in. Her son, Ashoka Mukpo, quarantined himself as soon as the fever set in. And Doctors Without Borders confirmed the diagnosis that day.

Her son had been to Liberia before to do development work, but returned after the Ebola outbreak to report on it.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

If you’ve walked through the front doors of a hospital lately, you might remember the friendly volunteer who greeted you, or gave you directions. Volunteers have been a mainstay in health care settings for years. But they’ve become an increasingly critical resource as health care dollars are spread thin.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Rhode Island, the Miriam, and Newport Hospitals will be handing out overdose prevention kits to patients at risk. The kits are just one piece of a larger program designed to combat opioid overdose deaths.

The hospitals will distribute overdose kits to patients who have been brought to their emergency rooms because of an overdose. That kit will include Narcan – a drug that can reverse an opioid overdose – in the form of a nasal spray.

RIPR FILE / Courtesy CVS

CVS Caremark will be joining Walgreens in allowing pharmacists to dispense a life-saving antidote for drug overdoses, without a prescription. That means that soon Narcan will be much more widely available throughout the state.

Rhode Island Hospital drug abuse epidemiologist Traci Green has been working with a statewide overdose prevention task force to get Narcan – also known as naloxone—into as many hands as possible. The drug can rescue someone who has overdosed on an opioid like heroin or prescription painkiller OxyContin.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Homemade cards and flowers are pouring in to Rhode Island Hospital for the seven injured circus acrobats who remain hospitalized there. That’s buoyed the performers’ spirits, four of whom are still in serious condition.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

A Rhode Island Hospital study has found a rise in the number of antibiotic resistant urinary tract infections. That’s coupled with an overall increase in these kinds of infections throughout the state.

Rhode Island Hospital and the entire Lifespan network have announced new guidelines for prescribing painkillers in their emergency rooms. ER doctors are trying to address the growing problem of prescription drug abuse and addiction.

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