State of California Doctors


State Bargaining Update 8/2/16

Last week UAPD finished putting all of our economic proposals on the table. We are looking for a fair across-the-board wage increase for all classifications, plus additional money for those groups that face serious parity and recruitment and retention issues.

While we have made some progress towards an agreement, our team is concerned that the State has not made enough movement on important proposals, like:
• Maintaining the prohibition on timekeeping
• Achieving salary parity where it does not exist
• Increasing on-call compensation and limiting the amount of work call requires
• Increasing CME pay
• Ensuring that evaluations come from qualified (MD, DDS, etc.) peers
• Respecting doctors’ professional judgment
• Providing adequate protection from lawsuits and licensing problems Read more …

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State Bargaining Update 7/18/16

Last week the UAPD Bargaining Team met with the State for three consecutive negotiation sessions and passed a number of the outstanding non-economic proposals.This will allow us to begin bargaining on economic matters, including salaries, this week.

Here are some of the key proposals that UAPD made:

For Article 12.2 Investigations, UAPD proposed language to guarantee that both the doctor and the union will be notified if there is an open investigation. Doctors in several departments have had the experience of receiving an adverse action without even knowing that they were under investigation. Under 12.3 Progressive Discipline, we also proposed a tighter timeline between when an incident occurs and when a discipline can be issued regarding that incident. Read more …

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UAPD Pursues Salary Corrections at UC

All University of California student health center doctors represented by UAPD received a 3% raise effective Friday, July 1st.  This marks the third salary increase in the UAPD contract, totaling a minimum of 10%, and significantly more for doctors at five campuses who were previously below negotiated minimum salaries or who received equity adjustments.

UAPD members will recall that the contract also provided for retroactive lump sum payments.   All of the campuses issued the lump sum payments by November 2015, and earlier this year, UAPD began a careful review of each campuses’ calculations. The Union found a structural error in most payroll departments’ methodologies, whereby doctors were not paid for two months of the first retroactive period. UAPD has been working with the Office of the President since that time to ensure that the missing amounts are issued and all doctors receive the full retroactive payments they are due.

As a result, some campuses are issuing corrective payments now and the others will follow soon thereafter. UAPD will send another announcement when the final correct amounts are documented so that any member unsure of their retroactive payment can verify it with the Union.

Bargaining Update 7/1/16

On Thursday, June 30, UAPD met with the State.  UAPD started the day with a proposal on Hours of Work, clarifying that working an average of 40 hours per week over a 12 month period means that some weeks should be shorter than 40 hours to offset those which are longer.  We also clarified that the prohibition on “timekeeping devices” in our contract extends to methods where the stated purpose is something other than timekeeping.  This includes things like personal duress alarm systems, identification badge swipe systems, sign-in sheets, and the like – none of these should be used to track a doctor’s time at work.  UAPD also proposed that doctors be held responsible only for reasonable objectives in the workplace.  An example of an unreasonable objective is CCHCS  holding individual physicians responsible for meeting their facility’s overall, court-ordered objectives for patient visits, when short staffing means the work is divided between too few doctors.
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Bargaining Update 6/24/16

Below is a summary of topics covered during the last few weeks of bargaining.  As always, there is a limit to how many issues we can address in each session. Please contact your labor representative if you have questions about an issue not yet covered.

Fixing the PEPRA Pension Cap
As of today, more than 20% of UAPD members are “new hires” under PEPRA and subject to the cap on pensionable salary.  That percentage will grow every year as more new hires come into the system.  When these doctors retire, their pension will be based on a maximum of $117,020 (adjusted for inflation each year), rather than their actual salary.  By our calculations, that constitutes a 45% loss of pension income for “PEPRA” members as compared to “Classic” members who are not subject to the pension cap. 

UAPD has met with legislators to urge them to introduce legislation remove the cap, but so far none have shown willingness to take the lead on the issue.  Therefore, UAPD has been looking for an alternative method to address the problem.  On June 23rd,  UAPD proposed that the State take the employer contribution on salary above the cap that, pre-PEPRA, would have gone to CalPERS, and put that money into defined contribution pension plans for PEPRA employees.  For more details, click here to read the text of UAPD’s presentation to the State.  UAPD strongly believes successful recruitment and retention requires a good pension, and that means doing something like this to offset the losses that came from the PEPRA pension cap. Read more …

Bargaining Update 6/1/16

Four members came to bargaining today to discuss the lack of parity between Physician Surgeons from the Department of State Hospitals and those doing the same work within the Department of Corrections. The presenters were Hossein Akhavan, MD (Atascadero), Dr. Ali Akhavan, M.D. (Napa), Dr. Teneese Nguyen (Metropolitan), and Dr. Stephanie Nguyen (Patton). UAPD followed the presentation with a proposal that DSH Physician and Surgeons receive a pay increase to bring them to 95% of what CDCR pays for the same position. Read more …

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Bargaining Update for BU 16 for 5/24/16

Last week the State made a presentation on OPEB, Other Post-Employment Benefits. OPEB are the benefits other than pension that retired workers receive from the employer, such as retiree health benefits. The State provided data indicating $436 million in unfunded liability for the retiree health benefits for our unit. They have proposed raising the prefunding contribution to 1% of salary next year (from 0.5% currently) and 1.4% the following year. Under their proposal, the State would be contributing an equivalent amount to the retiree health benefit fund. For new employees, the State also wants to introduce a vesting schedule for health and dental benefits, so that the State would pay 50% of benefits for those who retiree with 15 years of seniority and 100% of benefits for those with 25 years. For new employees, the State also wants decrease the amount the State will pay towards Medicare supplemental plans. The presenter argued that changes are necessary to make the retirement health program economically stable, but UAPD has questions about whether the costs they are projecting are truly realistic. We also know that cutting the benefits for future employees will make recruitment more difficult. Read more …

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BU 16 Bargaining Update 5/12/16

At today’s meeting with the State, we continued to discuss their responses to our information requests. Their Chief Negotiator clarified which of the dozens of reports they have provided gives the clearest picture of the vacancy rate in our unit, an important issue when we begin to discuss recruitment and retention of doctors.

The UAPD team raised our concerns about new mechanisms of investigating doctors that seem to violate the terms of our contract. Some managers claim that doctors facing “administrative reviews” or “audits” are not being “investigated,” so they are not subject to the protections in Article 12.2. Others say that investigations done by certain outside or internal units can proceed without regard to that contractual language. Next week we will continue listing our objections to this change in practice, and later this month the State will bring representatives from DSH and CDCR to present information and answer our questions. Read more …

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UAPD Lobbies Against UC Pension Attacks

On Wednesday April 20, UAPD joined AFSCME 3299, the California Nurses’ Association, and the Teamsters in a united lobbying effort against a proposed attack on the University of California pension. Ten teams of employees and staff met with 54 legislators and key staffers, explaining the problem and urging them to sign a letter demanding that UC’s proposition 2 funding for fiscal year 2016-2017 be contingent on elimination of the 401(k) opt-out.  Since the Assembly Speaker, Senate President, and Lt. Governor all signed letters opposing the opt-out, we are hopeful that with continued pressure, the legislature will agree to compel UC to do the right thing.

UAPD members will remember that the Coalition of UC Unions strongly oppose UC president Janet Napolitano’s Task Force’s recommendation to introduce caps on pensionable salary for all employees hired on or after July 1, 2016. You can read the emails describing those efforts and see UAPD President Stuart Bussey’s testimony here: January 15 email and January 29 email.
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BU 16 Bargaining Update 4/21/16

Today was the first day of Bargaining Unit 16 negotiations. After introductions, both sides agreed to the ground rules that will govern this round of bargaining.

Prior to the start of negotiations, Chief Negotiator Nereyda Rivera requested several types of information that the team will need to conduct bargaining. For example, we requested the number of vacancies by classification, department and institution, the names of doctors affected by the PEPRA pension cuts, and various kinds of leave reports. Today Principal Labor Relations Officer Candace Murch provided much of the information that we requested, and the team will review what was provided for completeness. The team also requested additional information from the State at this meeting.

Both sides agreed to roll over three articles for which we have no new proposals. Bargaining will continue next week at the UAPD office in Sacramento. Stay tuned for future updates.

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