The Oregon Health & Science University and House Officers Union bargaining teams met in person on Thursday, Oct. 26, for their 10th bargaining session.
The session focused on two primary themes: OHSU's proposed language for vacation leave and holidays in “Article 7: Time Away from Work” and HOU’s proposed language related to economics, specifically within sections of “Article 5: Compensation and Benefits.” The conversation around salary and housing stipend enhancements was the first of many, as both the OHSU and HOU bargaining teams work on reaching a compromise in a final agreement. The process takes time, and both teams will exchange several proposals throughout the course of bargaining. The eventual agreement is often very different from initial proposals.
The OHSU bargaining team’s proposals centered on “Article 7: Time Away from Work,” along with a new article related to compliance.
- Article 7: Time Away from Work: OHSU has provided a partial counterproposal for Article 7, time away from work:
- 7.2 Vacation: OHSU proposed clarifying available vacations days, so house officers would have 28 days of vacation per academic year, including weekends. As a result, a maximum of 20 vacation days can occur on a Monday through Friday and eight days over the weekend. A “day” is defined in this article as one continuous 24-hour period.
- 7.X Holiday Leave: OHSU proposed updating the Holiday Leave article to include several sub-articles related to holiday leave and distribution of holidays. This section adds language requiring programs to survey house officer to understand holiday preferences and review holidays worked prior to releasing holiday schedules. Additionally, new language was added to provide house officers a path to an alternative holiday scheduling process upon a vote of the program’s house officers. Juneteenth was also proposed as a floating holiday.
- 4.X Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Compliance: OHSU proposed language clarifying the path for house officers to address internal concerns with ACGME requirement interpretation, which includes discussion with the program director and then OHSU ACGME Resident Fellow Forum (OARFF) or Graduate Medical Education (GME) leadership. The OARFF or GME may elevate concerns to the Graduate Medical Education Committee (GMEC) if necessary.
HOU proposals focused on economics found within “Article 5: Compensation and Benefits.” Specifically, the HOU bargaining team proposed enhancements to house officers’ salary, housing allowance, relocation assistance benefit, work required expenses, along with educational and professional development funds. They also proposed new benefits providing for petty cash, a chief resident and fellow stipend, an independent practice bonus, unscheduled shift bonus, childcare reimbursement and a march wellness gym membership upon request.
- 5.1 Annual Salary Stipend: The HOU bargaining team proposed an increased salary stipend.
- 5.2 Housing Allowance: Housing allowance enhancements were proposed.
- 5.3 Relocation Assistance: The union presented enhancements to their relocation assistance.
- 5.5 Work Required Expenses: The union requested expanding reimbursement to include unlimited licenses.
- 5.6 Education and Professional Development: The union presented a proposal, increasing education and professional development reimbursement funds.
- 5.7 Petty Cash: The union recommended adding a petty cash fund to each department. These funds would be used to cover work-related expenses and would need to be approved by the financial administrator before purchase.
- 5.9 Chief Resident and Fellow Stipend: The HOU bargaining team proposed setting a floor to annual stipends.
- 5.10 Bilingual Bonus: The union proposed house officers be eligible for the bilingual bonus program.
- 5.11 Independent Practice Bonus: The union proposed language about additional compensation for Independent Practice.
- 5.12 Unscheduled Shift Bonus: A proposal was made relating to unexpected return-to-work calls and a request for a bonus.
- 5.13 Childcare Reimbursement: The union requested support for age-based childcare reimbursements.
- 5.14 March Wellness: The union has proposed adding a benefit allowing house officers to access membership to march wellness.
- 4.X ACGME Compliance: The union offered a counterproposal on ACGME that largely adopted OHSU’s proposed language, but added requirements that written responses be provided throughout the process.
The OHSU and HOU teams will next meet in person on Thursday, Nov. 2.