Jan 12, 2015 12:07 PM by News Staff
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Hundreds of Kaiser Permanente mental health professionals throughout California kicked off a weeklong strike Monday to protest what they say is a lack of staffing that affects care.
The health care provider's 2,600 psychologists, therapists and social workers walked out to demand that Kaiser Permanente offer what union spokesman Jim Clifford says is timely, quality mental health care at its psychiatry departments and clinics.
Clifford said some patients have to wait up to two months for follow-up appointments, which prolongs the recovery process.
The mental health workers are represented by the National Union of Healthcare Workers, which has been unable to reach a contract agreement with Kaiser since the union formed five years ago.
A Kaiser spokesman denied there is a shortage of mental health staff.
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