The hard part to making any serious decisions is that there has been a time frame put on this case, given 24 hours in which to release a press release. With this time frame in mind I would use the optimization of decision making.
Evaluating the situation and decisions.
Develop information concerning business.
Standardizing and documenting decisions that need to be made.
Determining decisions and information available.
Determine importance of decision to organization.
Training team on decision and process. (Johnson, 2009).
To start I would look at the situation at hand. We have a nurse who is possibly HIV positive working in our operating room. Next our surgeons (about 50) willing to pull all surgeries out of the facility costing millions of dollars and lay off hundreds of employees, which in the long run would jeopardize the future of the hospital alone.
We have offered this nurse the opportunity to stay employed with our company with the same pay, shift and working hours and was rejected. He in turn went and hired an attorney who is threatening to file a lawsuit for the client/nurse.
Taking everything into consideration, I would let the employee go. We offered everything the same just not in a surgical setting.
By losing our surgical portion of the medical center we would lose more than we would in a lawsuit. We are insured to where we can only loose so much of our business funds and while there is going to be negative coverage the majority not knowing all the facts of research will back the hospitals decision. Most will not want a nurse, no matter how experienced or cautious working in the surgery room while they are the patient.
We can show our staff documentation proving that few cases has been proven where an HIV medical professional has infected a patient, but given only 24 hours does not give us time to try to reason with the medical staff and show them the documentation or try to work some sort of agreement between all involved.
My release to the chief of surgery, who can notify the necessary staff (since not all staff were involved with knowing who the nurse is, and this would protect his identity until he went public) would be a lengthy memo.
I understand your concerns for having a nurse that you suspect of having HIV. The drawback of not knowing makes things more of a risk. While we do use Universal precautions and the nurse does not work in every operation this center is involved in, I can appreciate the concerns. However, there is strong research showing that if precautions are taken as they should be, there is almost no chance of any contamination of the fellow coworkers or residents. ABC News did a report with Lawrence Gostin who is a leading expert from Georgetown University Law Center. Gostin states that the government should not compel HIV-infected doctors to tell patients. While the CDC has adopted the guidelines in 1991, now it states it is better to focus on preventative measures. The AMA is opposed to mandatory disclosure of HIV-infected physicians because of the bias aspects that comes with the knowledge of someone being infected with the HIV-virus (Tanner, 2013).
Much like the rest of our staff, and the other co-workers suspecting him of HIV, you have shunned him and made him feel unable to discuss anything that is going on. It is also possible that if he is HIV positive, he may not seek the treatment that is available due to his fear of being exposed. There is plenty of documentation as well as studies showing that surgeons can continue to do invasive procedures and surgery as long as he respects infection control standards