This petition is due to the recent decision to reduce and eliminate resident subsidies for healthcare insurance. While this was the result of a comprehensive review and comparison to similar institutions, there are several reasons why we, as GWU residents, are against this decision.
1. This decision worsens the already inflationary expenditures that a GWU resident has to endure. Despite the adjusted salary, the cost of living in the greater metropolitan DC area far surpasses that adjustment. We are already burdened by massive loans and many of us are living paycheck to paycheck. All of us are locked into year-long leases and have made budgets contingent upon the healthcare subsidy, and our leasing contracts are not something we can change.This short-notice modification of crucial benefits that were assured for us as residents is unacceptable.
2. This decision will likely result in increased costs for the hospital as well as the university. As medical professionals, we are at a high risk for communicable disease. These upcoming changes will serve as a monetary barrier to entry for us to receive quality healthcare despite us being the very ones that provide it. As a result, sick days will be on the rise and, patients themselves will be at an increased risk of getting sick. The university, which has a vested interest in hospital profits, will see a concordant inefficiency to hospital flow.
3. This decision represents a negative cultural shift in our views of the stability of our contract. If an executive decision can be made to modify our benefits, there is no assurance whatsoever that it will not be modified again. While the town hall meeting is much appreciated, the lack of transparency in this decision making process is resulting in a loss of our trust in the administration. All of the constituents, including residency program directors, that are directly and indirectly affected by this decision were never notified that this was being discussed. This effectively left zero opportunity for us to have any input on this issue. How can any benefit that is marketed to future incoming residents be trustworthy?
We strongly urge Dr. Knapp to reconsider this decision; re-instate not only the full subsidy of resident health insurance, but our confidence in the administration as well.