Minnesota hospital shooting comes year after nurses asked for more security

Nurses at Minneapolis-based M Health Fairview say they asked for heightened security in its hospitals’ parking areas last year, but administrators ignored the request, reports the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

On the night of Sept. 14, a physician was shot in his head during an attempted robbery on a parking ramp at the system’s Fairview Southdale Hospital in Edina, Minn., police said. The 45-year-old physician survived the shooting and was discharged from the hospital the next morning. As of Sept. 16, no arrests had been made in the case.

Nurses raised parking-related safety concerns during union contract negotiations with the health system last year, detailing “unsafe and mind-boggling obstacles” traveling to and from their cars, according to the report. They also described waiting at least an hour for hospital shuttles or to have security escort them to their cars.

“M Health Fairview was not interested in discussions regarding parking ramp safety when we proposed this in 2019 and never provided any counterproposal,” Cassy Fogale, a labor representative with the Minnesota Nurses Association, told the Journal Sentinel.

M Health Fairview confirmed to the Journal Sentinel that it did not address parking safety during contract negotiations. 

“Workplace safely has been a shared concern for all of our hospital staff administrators,” Joe Campbell, a spokesperson for the system, told the publication. “We all share the same common objective of making our hospitals safe places to work and receive care.”

Fairview Southdale Hospital is in the process of increasing hospital safety and security, Vice President of System Operations Paul Onufer told staff in a Sept. 15 email obtained by the Journal Sentinel. The hospital said it is boosting security patrols in parking structures, adding more security officers outside its buildings and updating security technology, among other measures. 

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