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Health science professionals call off job action; membership consultation meetings planned after government tries to provoke escalation of strike

The Health Science Professionals Bargaining Association (HSPBA) has called off rotating strikes planned for the coming week.
Following three round-the-clock days of talks mediated by veteran labour mediator Vince Ready, the government tabled a proposal just before midnight Saturday for a wage increase and massive concessions. The proposal adds up to a general wage increase of 1.4 per cent over two years ... and some health care workers could be facing wage roll backs.

Flu policy agreement reached Nov. 30 still stands, despite some employers directives

In spite of an agreement reached between HSA and other health care unions and the Ministry of Health last week, some members continue to get pressure to either produce evidence of vaccination against seasonal influenza, or wear a mask during the flu season, which was declared open December 1.

For members information, at the meeting held between the Ministry of Health, HSA, BCGEU and HEU November 30, the following agreement was reached:

While the policy remains on the books the mandatory provisions of it will not be enforced. This means:

Mediator involved in health science professionals contract bargaining

Negotiators for health science professionals and health employers have agreed to mediation nine months after bargaining began. Mediator Vince Ready was brought in by the parties this week.

-We are pleased to have Mr. Ready join us in trying to kick-start meaningful negotiations," said Health Science Professionals Bargaining Association (HSPBA) Chief Negotiator Jeanne Meyers.

Rotating strikes planned for Thursday, Friday as health science professionals pressure for a new union contract

As health science professionals return to the bargaining table today, plans to begin rotating strikes have been delayed one day to demonstrate good faith in the bargaining process. Talks between the Health Science Professionals Bargaining Association and Health Employers Association of BC are scheduled to continue through the week.

With the change, the rotating strikes will begin Thursday, December 6. That day, pharmacy services at BC hospitals will be reduced to essential service levels only from 9 a.m. to midnight.

There will be no picket lines.

Health science professionals set to take strike action next week

For immediate release:  November 30, 2012

The members of BCs modern health care team who provide diagnostic, clinical and rehabilitation services have announced they will begin strike action next week.  Tired and frustrated by months of inaction at the bargaining table, health science professionals voted 90 per cent in favour of a strike this month.

Wednesday, December 5, pharmacists ... who were threatened with a 15 per cent wage rollback earlier this year ... will reduce their work to essential services only.

Heart surgery cancellations a clear message that shortages in health science professions can no longer be ignored by BC government

News of heart surgery cancellations in Vancouver this week unfortunately doesnt come as a surprise to the Health Sciences Association of BC, and the union is calling for immediate action by the Ministry of Health to address the shortages responsible for a long-standing and continuing weakness in health authorities ability to provide critical services for very ill patients.

Cambie Audit: Government Must Stop Illegal Billing by Private Clinics - Medical Services Commission Audit of Cambie Surgery Centre and Specialist Referral Clinic Reveals Shocking Extent of Illegal Billing

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - July 19, 2012) - The BC Health Coalition is calling on the provincial government to undertake a full-scale review of all for-profit surgical facilities in the province in light of findings released by the Medical Services Commission yesterday. The MSC audit report shows that almost half of all the services examined at the Cambie and Specialist Referral clinics were eligible for public health insurance coverage, and that the clinics engaged in illegal billing regarding almost all of these eligible services.