Message from UAPD President about upcoming LA County Contract and Salary Negotiations

April 20, 2018

Dear LA County Colleague:

Please click on the 88-second video message below to hear how your colleagues plan to improve your MOU and how you can help by (re)committing yourself to full UAPD membership.

After watching the video click the appropriate link at the bottom. You will be redirected to a Docu-sign membership form.

Thanks.

Stuart Bussey, M.D., J.D.
UAPD President

 

LA County Physicians, Psychiatrists, and Dentists (BU 324/325) click here

LA County Pharmacists (BU 301) click here.

 

Doctors: Independent Professionals or Government Agents?

April 2, 2018

By Stuart A. Bussey, MD, JD, UAPD President

The sad look in my patient’s eyes reached down to the pit of my stomach “I only want to drive a couple of miles to my friend’s house” he lamented. But Carl’s progressive dementia and arthritis couldn’t allow me to sign his DMV driver’s license form.  Increasingly, we physicians have been placed in the often uncomfortable position of being both the investigator and enforcer of privileges involving health issues. Driving, adoption, school and sports participation, employment, disability, competence, and conservatorship are only some of them.  Institutions, especially our governments, look to us for guidance and assign liability to our decisions.

This holds special relevance for our UAPD doctors who are employed in various levels of government. What happens when our professional judgment and scientific reasoning collide with the protocols of an agency or a supervisor with a personal agenda? We have all experienced conflicts regarding patient care or disposition with our supervisors and administrators. Debates about appropriate medications at CDCR, discharge decisions at County hospitals or claimant disability at DSS often make us feel that we are mere tools of government, not independent practitioners.
Read more …

BU 16 On-Call Assignment Now Less Onerous for Some Institutions

February 21, 2018

Bargaining Unit 16 employees at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation are starting to see some relief from high call volumes and workloads that have been stretching the limits of what can be considered a reasonable expectation for after-hours Physician On-Call assignments.

Building on newly negotiated contract language, “mini-MOD” assignments are being tested at Central California Women’s Facility, CSP-Los Angeles County, Mule Creek State Prison, Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility, California Institute for Men, Kern Valley State Prison, and Salinas Valley State Prison. 

Members—and represented BU 16 employees—who are not currently part of the testing should contact their UAPD steward or union representative to discuss the viability of bringing this new MOD to your facility. 

If you are not a member of the union, please use this link to become one. High union density enables employees, including BU 16 doctors, to bargain over issues that impact working conditions and patient care.

 

A Brief Update on Sierra Conservation Center

February 13, 2018

SCC recently rolled out the Electronic Health Record System (EHRS). A grievance was filed regarding the inadequate training. The department has agreed to provide additional training to staff.

The UAPD participated in the Meet and Confer process regarding the installation of additional security cameras to be placed at SCC.

Management has not been honoring vacation requests pursuant to the BU 16 MOU. The UAPD is working with the local labor representative to ensure Bargaining Unit 16 members time-off/vacation requests are honored pursuant to the contract. There is a scheduled meeting to follow-up on management’s committed to counseling the supervising dentists and rectifying the situation so BU 16 members are afforded time-off/vacations requests pursuant to the MOU, as opposed to arbitrarily.

A Summary of the AHS January 24th Membership Meeting

February 1, 2018

On Wednesday, January 24th, a UAPD representative for AHS met with your colleagues following the monthly provider meeting.  We had a very good, engaging meeting.  UAPD gave a brief update on the status of negotiations, which is advancing at a very slow pace due to AHS’s inability to provide the Union with necessary information.  

UAPD also clarified to our members that the Union did NOT agree to the following changes:

  • UAPD did not agree to change the patient scheduling start times at the Ambulatory Care Clinics!
  • UAPD did not agree to require doctors to make-up PTO time approved with less than 90 days advance notice!

The Union did, however, agree to require 90 days advance notice for PTO requests because this time frame is an improvement from the current terms of the MOU, which requires PTO requests to be submitted at the beginning of each year.

UAPD will continue to fight AHS’s attempts to unilaterally make changes to your work conditions without first notifying and meeting with the Union.  It is an unfair labor practice to directly deal with UAPD members about their terms and conditions of employment.  UAPD will pursue an Unfair Labor Charge against AHS for violating your rights.  

NEW BARGAINING SUBCOMMITTEE

Many doctors were very interested in participating in the current negotiations. UAPD is happy to announce that Dr. Laura Wise (Hayward) will be at the table as the latest member of the negotiating committee.  Also, the doctors have formed a bargaining subcommittee to discuss proposals and information on an ongoing basis.  These meetings will take place during non-work hours at a time and place agreed upon.  The first of these sub-committee meetings will take place on Thursday, February 8th at 5:30 PM at the following location:

Caffe Trieste 
4045 Piedmont Avenue (near 41st Street)
Oakland, CA 94611

More updates will be provided as negotiations continue.

Santa Cruz County Incentive Payments Forthcoming

January 31, 2018

On January 29, UAPD representatives met with Santa Cruz management to discuss the status of incentive payments pursuant to provisions of the MOU. Under article 7.2, of the MOU, eligible UAPD-represented employees would qualify for a quarterly incentive pay of up to 15% of their base pay starting July 1, 2017. At this meeting management presented UAPD for the first time with specific data related to providers qualifications for the incentive pay for the 2017 quarters ranging from July 1 to September 30 and October 1 to December 31. After careful discussion, UAPD asked for management to make temporary discretionary adjustments to the policy so that more providers would qualify for incentive pay for the quarters reviewed. Once an understanding is reached, providers can expect for the County to then make the payments for the first quarter.

If a provider has any questions or concerns about this issue, they are encouraged to discuss it with a member of UAPD’s team who attended the meeting: Dr. Brooks, Dr. Santillano, Dr. Yazgan or UAPD representatives Albert Munoz or Nereyda Rivera.

Grievances filed against CDCR’s Telemedicine and Telepsychiatry Programs

January 28, 2018

When the telemedicine and telepsychiatry programs were first launched by the department, physicians were told that they would not have to cover On-call assignments. The department then decided to start requiring them to cover on-call assignments. The Department changed telemedicine working conditions without notifying the UAPD. A grievance was filed and the Department responded by notifying the UAPD that they were initiating a telemedicine on-call pilot program. That program failed and the Department concluded that they will not be requiring telemedicine doctors to cover on-call assignments.

We filed a grievance regarding Additional Appointments for Telemedicine. The Department has now said that telemedicine has a right to Additional appointments.

The UAPD met with the Department to discuss a proposed policy. CDCR has not updated the policy to reflect the agreed upon changes from the last meeting. Nonetheless, CDCR has added additional telepsychiatry sites without notifying the UAPD.

We filed a Cease and Desist regarding implemented changes to the program without notice to the union. The UAPD had a Meet and Confer with the Department to discuss the opening of the Diamond Bar location.

The UAPD has scheduled quarterly Telehealth Committee Meetings to address these issues.

An Overview of Northeast Valley Health Corp in 2017

January 27, 2018

In 2017, UAPD learned that NEVHC now has 68 per diems (not in the UAPD BU) while the number of Full and Part Time benefited employees, UAPD members, has shrunk in comparison.  The Per Diems are doing UAPD bargaining unit work.  We are addressing this in bargaining, among other issues, subject to bargaining.

The members achieved close to 100% participation in UAPD Bargaining surveys which were circulated by leadership early, with member leaders and stewards who strongly encouraged 100% participation, to enter negotiations from a position of strength, with everyone’s input.

NEVHC leaders continue to make inroads and connections for UAPD to other local FQHCs and have met with other providers interested in organizing with UAPD.  Likewise, NEVHC members are glad to offer their support to further the work and scope of UAPD, in Southern California as well as anywhere else, and to increase UAPD’s and NEVHC’s membership and help both grow.

Just Culture Policy Finalized!

January 26, 2018

Under the new policy, Union members and management will educate the workforce on the new policy, identify potential system deficiencies in various departments, and recruit team members to assist in resolving potential problems.  Just Culture will focus less on disciplinary actions and focus more on corrective actions.   UAPD members will have access to all bargaining unit members when discussing Just Culture.  So, they will be able to recruit new members and provide updates on Union activities.  

UAPD and DHS developed new programs to continue efforts for Physician recruitment and retention.  In order to continue building on the successful events sponsored by the Union and the County, a new recruitment incentive and student loan payment reimbursement was established.  New hires in Correctional Health will be eligible for up to $30,000:   $10,000 after 6 months and another $20,000 after 18 months on the job.  New employees could opt for the student loan payment reimbursement program.  Physicians would receive up to $30, 000 at the end of each year up to 4 years (total $120,000 in reimbursement).  The Department of Mental Health has expressed interest in creating similar programs for recruitment and retention of Psychiatrists in Los Angeles County.

AHS News and Negotiation Updates

January 26, 2018

Negotiations continue at a very slow and frustrating pace. AHS does not provide the necessary information for the Union to prepare a market proposal. Most of the union’s proposals have been submitted except for market adjustments and extended hours proposal.

AHS has withheld payment of the 4% lump sum payment to psychiatrists per the currently expired MOU. AHS maintains that it cannot instruct its payroll department to make the payments to the doctors. UAPD will file a request for arbitration to get these bonuses paid. Also, AHS has failed to provide evidence that the outpatient clinics did not meet the metrics for the past two measuring periods. UAPD has asked that all physicians receive the maximum bonus payment. AHS is still struggling to provide the evidence. UAPD will file for an arbitration for these bonus payments, per the MOU. Read more …

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