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Virginia Mason – CHI Franciscan Joint Operating Company #
What does it mean? What impact will it have on nurses and medical care? What can you do to help?#
Since Virginia Mason announced they are in discussion with CHI Franciscan to create a Joint Operating Company (JOC), WSNA has heard from many nurses asking how the partnership will impact the medical services provided to our community and what impact any new entity will have on nurses currently working for Virginia Mason.
WSNA members have questions about how the proposed JOC will impact nurses and the health care services provided to the community. WSNA filed a request for information asking Virginia Mason to provide answers in a variety of areas including: the effective date of the proposed JOC; whether all the nurses employed at Virginia Mason shall continue to be employed after the JOC is formed; whether the JOC or other employer shall adopt and comply with the terms and conditions of the collective bargaining agreement between Virginia Mason and WSNA. Virginia Mason has informed WSNA that their attorneys are reviewing and will be preparing a response our request.
WSNA is aware that some Virginia Mason nurses are planning to attend a demonstration on September 18 in front the Hospital to protest the possible reduction of vital services to our community as the result of a potential joint venture with CHI.
WSNA shares the concerns of Virginia Mason nurses concerning the reduction or elimination of services provided to our community, including denying access to reproductive health services and severely restricting end of life care services. However, this particular demonstration may expose nurses to adverse action by Virginia Mason, including discipline and discharge.
It is quite possible that Virginia Mason may assert that any planned demonstration violates the broad “no strike/no picketing clause” of our collective bargaining agreement. Such clauses are commonplace in collective bargaining agreements. If the demonstration were found to violate this provision of the contract, nurses involved participating in it could be subject to discipline and discharge.
BECAUSE OF THESE RISKS, WE STRONGLY REQUEST THAT THE PLANNED DEMONSTRATION NOT TAKE PLACE AND THAT YOU RELAY THIS MESSAGE TO YOUR FELLOW NURSES.
The risks associated with this particular action are simply too high. Instead, we invite nurse to join WSNA in other approaches to getting our message across to Management that we will not sit idly by while important services to the community are eliminated.
As WSNA nurses at Virginia Mason, we are concerned that the commitment to provide Washington residents access to the full range of legal health services including women’s health services and end of life care will be abandoned under the proposed Joint Operating Company (JOC) with CHI Franciscan. We are also concerned that comprehensive health care services to the LGBTQ community will be at risk under the JOC. This partnership and the resulting impact on care is not motivated by the needs of patients. This proposed partnership is deeply flawed and misguided, and it should not be approved unless there is a commitment to deliver the same quality and breadth of care our community has come to expect from Virginia Mason.
Add your name to the open letter calling on Dr. Kaplan to defend the health care services provided at Virginia Mason and resist any effort to limit those services as part of any agreement with CHI Franciscan.
We recently had a Virginia Mason local unit call with WSNA leadership to hear directly from nurses concerns and questions about the potential Joint Operating Company with CHI Franciscan. We know that many of you were not able to be on the call to voice your concerns or questions and we want to hear from all of the bargaining unit.
Completing the survey will take less than two minutes. Follow this link to be sure your voice is heard.
If you find yourself in a situation that you believe creates unsafe conditions for patients or for you, you should complete a Staffing Complaint / ADO Form as soon as possible.
By completing the form, you will help make the problem known to management, creating an opportunity for the problem to be addressed. Additionally, you will be documenting the facts, which may be helpful to you later if there is a negative outcome.
WSNA also uses your ADO forms to track the problems occurring in your facility. When you and your coworkers take the important step of filling out an ADO form, you are helping to identify whether there is a pattern of unsafe conditions for you or your patients at your facilities. This information is used by your conference committee, staffing committee, and WSNA labor staff to improve your working conditions.
If called into a meeting with management, read the following to management when the meeting begins:
If this discussion could in any way lead to my being disciplined or terminated, I respectfully request that my union representative be present at this meeting. Without representation present, I choose not to participate in this discussion.