ROS Action Announcement

The University of Washington Housestaff Association (UWHA) has announced the plan to center documentation on patient care rather than billing codes starting Monday, March 16. Residents and fellows will only include relevant and accurate documentation, allowing them to refocus on patients. We are doctors: we want to spend time with our patients, not computers. Over 400 residents and fellows have pledged to participate as of February 28, 2020. 

This action will not negatively impact patient care. We anticipate this will improve patient satisfaction with their care. All residents and fellows will continue to document what matters for patient care.   

All relevant clinical information is still documented and this does not impact the physician’s ability at current time or in the future to care for the patient. 
Please direct questions or media inquiries to admin@uwha.com.

February 19th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the twenty-fourth bargaining session on Wednesday, February 19th. UWHA brought counter proposals for Articles 6, 7, 11, 12, 13, and 16th. LR submitted a package proposal including proposals on Articles 6, 7, 11, 13, 16, 23, and 25.

Article 6 (Fringe Benefits), UWHA added language that aligns the Wellness and Counseling Appointment policy with that of ACGME program requirements, lowered the meal reimbursement rate to $10.00 per meal, with a $0.50 increase each year, and lowered the relocation stipend to $2,500 for incoming residents.

Article 7 (Grievances), UWHA offered minor language updates.

Articles 11 (Leave – Extended) and Article 13 (Leave – Miscellaneous), UWHA proposed minor language changes. The two parties are almost met on language. 

Article 12 (Leave – Holiday), UWHA removed language that would allow members to have their birthday be considered a holiday. 

Article 16 (Leave – Vacation), UWHA added language that would support a mechanism for residents who are not able to take all but two of their vacation days, to examine why they were unable to take the time off. The purpose of this mechanism is to identify if programs are denying vacation time and improve this in the future.

LR’s package proposal includes proposals to: 

Article 6 (Fringe Benefits), LR proposed increasing the meal reimbursement to $9.50 beginning July 1, 2021. 

Article 7 (Grievances), LR proposed to eliminate the “Resolution” language.

Articles 11 (Leave – Extended) and Article 13 (Leave – Miscellaneous), LR proposed minor language changes. 

Article 16 (Leave – Vacation), LR proposed giving residents a minimum of twenty-four days (18 weekdays and 6 weekend days) of paid vacation each year. 

Article 23 (Salary/Stipend), LR has increased the salary offer to include 2-2-2% raises each year, and decreased the first year date effective to 75 days after ratification, instead of 90 days. Additionally, LR increased the housing stipend by another $100, totalling $2,300 (please note this has essentially been combined with the $750 travel stipend, so is more like $1,550 for housing and $750 for travel). 

Article 25 (Transportation), In lieu of removing the bike sustainability program, LR has proposed a fully-subsidized UPASS and increased the Safe Ride Home program to $700/year for all residents. 

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Tuesday, March 3rd from 3:00-7:00pm at Roosevelt Commons West, Rm. 271. UWHA welcomes all members to attend.

Upcoming Events

February

13 – Member Engagement Happy Hour, 7-10pm, RSVP! (All Members Welcome)
19 – Negotiations, 3-7pm, Roosevelt Commons West (4300 Roosevelt Way NE), Rm 271 (All Members Welcome)
24 – Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:30pm, UW South Campus Center, Email for Details (All Members Welcome)

March

3 – Negotiations, 3-7pm, Roosevelt Commons West (4300 Roosevelt Way NE), Rm 256 NOTE: DIFFERENT ROOM THAN NORMAL (All Members Welcome)
11 – Negotiations, 3-7pm, Roosevelt Commons West (4300 Roosevelt Way NE), Rm 271 (All Members Welcome)
18 – Negotiations, 3-7pm, Roosevelt Commons West (4300 Roosevelt Way NE), Rm 271 (All Members Welcome)
TBA – Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:30pm, UW South Campus Center, Email for Details (All Members Welcome)

April

9 – Negotiations, 3-7pm, Roosevelt Commons West (4300 Roosevelt Way NE), Rm 271 (All Members Welcome)
15 – Negotiations, 3-7pm, Roosevelt Commons West (4300 Roosevelt Way NE), Rm 271 (All Members Welcome)
21 – Negotiations, 3-7pm, Roosevelt Commons West (4300 Roosevelt Way NE), Rm 271 (All Members Welcome)
29 – Negotiations, 3-7pm, Roosevelt Commons West (4300 Roosevelt Way NE), Rm 271 (All Members Welcome)
TBA – Monthly Board Meeting, 6:30-8:30pm, UW South Campus Center, Email for Details (All Members Welcome)

February 6th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the twenty-third bargaining session on February 6th. UWHA brought counter proposals for Articles 2, 21, and 26/XX. LR submitted a package proposal including new language on Articles 6, 7, 11, 13, 16, 23, and 25. They also proposed responses to articles 2 and 26/XX. 

Article 2 (Committees), UWHA and LR each proposed versions of this article. The two parties are apart on the issue of alternate representatives to the GMEC and GME Policy Committee meetings in the event that the UWHA designee cannot attend. UWHA has proposed that any UWHA Board Member could step in in place of the designee, but LR has refused, insisting that there be only one alternative representative to each committee that is decided for the entire year. 

Article 6 (Fringe Benefits), the parties remained aligned on new language regarding resident orientation pay, professional liability coverage, and guaranteed laundering of white coats. LR did not match UWHA’s proposed language stating that residents must be released from duty to attend mental health appointments despite the ACGME common program requirements using similar language. LR’s proposal continues to state that programs make a “good faith effort” to release the residents for these appointments. LR withdrew their previous Meals proposal and instead proposed an increase to the meals stipend from $7.50 to $8.50 per meal. The UWHA’s prior proposal was $11 per meal to match the stipend at Seattle Children’s Hospital. LR continues to reject UWHA’s language creating a relocation reimbursement. 

Article 7 (Grievance Procedure), LR proposed language matching UWHA’s proposal to retain contract language regarding timelines throughout the grievance process. The parties remain apart on the issue of Step 3 of the grievance process, during which both parties present their cases to a committee including residents and faculty, and the committee provides a response/decision. 

Articles 11 (Washington Family Medical Leave Program) and 13 (Leave – Miscellaneous), between these two articles, most language is aligned and the UWHA will present their likely final proposal for Tentative Agreement on February 19th. These articles detail important changes and large wins for residents including explication of the new PFML program, new language on guaranteed pregnancy accommodations and the process for requesting them, and new language on leave related to domestic violence or sexual assault.

Article 16 (Leave – Vacation), LR proposed adding an additional two weekday vacation days, a change from their prior proposal of no additional vacation days. This is compared to UWHA’s proposal of five additional week day and two additional weekend vacation days. 

Article 21 (Professional Development and Licensing), UWHA proposed changing the process for payment of professional development funds. Due to concerns from UW regarding administrative burden, UWHA has proposed to remove the reimbursement process altogether and instead provide a stipend at the beginning of each year. 

Article 23 (Salary), LR accepted UWHA’s proposed language regarding adding a new R9 pay level, meaning fellows who are advancing from R8 to R9 will for the first time receive a pay increase. However, LR did not propose any increase over their prior proposals in starting salary or yearly increases. They continue to propose only a 2% increase in AY20 only starting three months after ratification, a 2% increase in AY21 and a 1% increase in AY22. They increased their home call stipend offer by $100. 

Article 25 (Transportation), LR proposed new language regarding parking during normal business hours and changes to parking policies. LR continues to propose more restrictive language regarding might and weekend parking and the safe ride home program. They continue to propose a cap on the dollar amount provided for reimbursement through the safe ride home program though have increased this cap from their last proposal from $500 to $600 per year. LR has not accepted UWHA’s proposal for a free U-PASS. LR continues to propose removing the bike sustainability reimbursement entirely. 

Article 26/XX (Miscellaneous, new articles), UWHA proposed accepting some of LR’s language regarding election notification, staff representatives, use of state resources, and information requests. The parties remain significantly apart on recognition, duration and owed wages. LR counter proposed similar language to their original proposals regarding use of state resources and duration, but withdrew their proposal regarding information requests. 

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Wednesday, February 19th from 3:00-7:00pm at Roosevelt Commons West, Rm. 271. UWHA welcomes all members to attend.

January 28th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the twenty-second bargaining session on January 28th and Articles 1-3, 6, 7, 11-13, 18, 23, and 25 were discussed. UWHA brought counter proposals for Articles 1, 2, 6, 7, 11, 12, 13, 18, and 23. LR proposed reverting to current contract language on Article 3. 

Article 1 (Childcare), UWHA accepted additional language from LR’s last proposal and decreased the financial ask to $496,000.

Article 2 (Committees), UWHA proposes updates to representation structure at the

Article 3 (Definitions), LR gave a verbal proposal regarding striking the counter proposals they’ve brought so far and going back to current contract language.

Article 6 (Fringe Benefits), UWHA brought updated language on a number of items, including meal reimbursement, internal moonlighting, wellness appointments, and access to internal gyms.

Article 7 (Grievance Procedure), UWHA brought forth a new proposal. The main disagreement is with Step 4 of the grievance process, regarding how a grievance is settled with arbitrators. 

Article 11 (Leave-Extended), UWHA maintains that pregnant residents shall be able to request accommodation and the language in this article needs to be strong due to the culture around asking for assistance. 

Article 12 (Leave-Holidays), UWHA accepted various language from LR regarding the “Faith Conscious Holiday” and dropped language about paying out the paid personal holiday. UWHA still maintains that if the holiday is rejected by the employer, then the day can be rolled over into the next year, and granting the resident’s birthday off.

Article 13 (Leave-Miscellaneous), UWHA and LR have nearly come to agreement. Due to the changes in law re: PFML, each group organized the new law into separate articles but is in agreement on language. Once this is sorted, this article will likely be prepared to be Tentatively Agreed to. 

Article 18 (Moonlighting), UWHA continues to explicitly include GME policy for moonlighting in the language of this article, as it ensures that the policy is not changed without the ability to negotiate. LR continues to direct to GME policy, instead of including language. 

Article 23 (Salary), due to the delay in having a mutually agreed upon contract, UWHA has increased the salary ask to reflect the increases in salaries of other residency programs since negotiations began. This increases the base salaries at each R level, by approximately 2%. UWHA did not increase the housing stipend, despite housing stipends increasingly on a national level.

Article 25 (Transportation), UWHA accepted language from LR’s last proposal. LR has still not offered a fully-subsidized UPASS (although other unions at UW have this). UWHA continues to assert the importance of a robust Safe Ride Home program.

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Thursday, February 6th from 3:00-7:00pm at Roosevelt Commons West, Rm. 271. UWHA welcomes all members to attend.

UWHA Bike Fund Reimbursements are due by January 31st to GME!

Quarterly Bicycle Stipend

What: $25 stipend, given quarterly

Eligibility: UWHA members who bicycle > 80% of the AY20 fall quarter (from October 1, 2019 – December 31, 2019)

How:

  • Legibly complete and sign the attached form. Please ensure that you initial all lines.
  • Submit to GME by e-mail (UWGME@uw.edu) or mail (UW GME Bike Fund, Box 358047)

Bike Helmets

What: A free bike helmet

How:

  • Submit receipt to GME by e-mail for electronic receipts (UWGME@uw.edu) or mail for paper receipts (UW GME Bike Fund, Box 358047)
  • Costs must have been incurred during the AY20 fall quarter (from October 1, 2019 – December 31, 2019 )

Bike Maintenance

What: up to $100 in bicycle maintenance costs.

How:

  • Submit receipt to GME by e-mail (UWGME@uw.edu) or mail (UW GME Bike Fund, Box 358047)
  • Costs must have been incurred during the AY20 fall quarter (from October 1, 2019 – December 31, 2019 )
  • Examples of reimbursable items: costs of maintenance service, tools, bike tubes, lights, locks
  • Examples of non-reimbursable items: bicycles, clothing, backpacks, panniers, running shoes, or other non-bike maintenance or non-bike related items.

Rejected requests are commonly due to easily fixable errors

  • Receipts must be itemized.
    • Documenting each individual item purchased or service performed
    • Vendor
    • Cost
    • Date of purchase
  • Bike shop services: they give you two pieces of paper: an invoice itemizing what was done and a receipt showing that it was paid for (often stapled together). Please save BOTH and submit BOTH at the end of the year.
  • Carbon copies: please submit the top sheet. The lower sheets can be damaged easily.
  • Amazon: e-mail receipts are not adequate. Instead, do this:
    • Accounts and lists
    • Your orders
    • Order details
    • View or print invoice
  • If you’re sending a scan or picture, please ensure it is legible

Please note:

  • Reimbursements will be made via whatever mechanism you have in place for your paycheck (Ex: if you are signed up for direct deposit, then the reimbursement will be made via direct deposit).
  • Please provide your name and your UW NetID along with the receipt.
  • You must approve of the reimbursement in Ariba (as the final step in the reimbursement process).  These notices will come to your UW email account.  If you submit for a reimbursement, please check your UW email frequently as these notifications will time out of the system if you do not approve in a timely manner.

Deadline for these submissions is January 31, 2020 at 5pm.

January 7th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the twentieth bargaining session on January 7th Articles 2, 3, 5, 7, and 11 were discussed. This was the first negotiation session with PERC Mediator, Chris Casillas in attendance. Tentative Agreements were signed on Articles 14 and 22. 

Article 2 (Committees), UWHA and LR have disagreement regarding alternate designees for committee representation. UWHA maintains that unpredictable resident schedules prevent resident representation on various committees, and the rules for who can attend needs to be less restrictive.

Article 3 (Definitions), UWHA continues to assert that the definition of a resident or fellow is not limited to only residents and fellows in ACGME accredited programs.

Article 5 (Dues Deduction), there are still discrepancies between the two proposals regarding how to ensure that dues are not erroneously removed from UW employees, who are no longer members of the bargaining unit.

Article 7 (Grievances), LR updated language in their proposal to more closely align with UWHA proposal. 

Article 11 (Leave – Extended), UWHA updated language to better reflect new state law.

Articles 14 (Leave – Professional) and 22 (Progression by Training Year) were discussed and tentative agreements were signed by both parties.

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Wednesday, January 15th from 3:00-7:00pm at Roosevelt Commons West, Rm. 271. UWHA welcomes all members to attend.

State of Negotiations

Updated as of: February 3, 2020

As many applicants are deliberating institutions they plan to rank in the near future, we feel responsible for sharing the progress that has been made in our ongoing contract negotiations. We know that salary, benefits, and culture are high priorities when ranking programs across the country. We also feel that having union representation is a huge strength of the University of Washington, and we are excited and optimistic about the improved benefits we will receive with our new contract. 

UWHA and the employer have tentative agreements on Articles:

  • 4 (Disciplinary Action and Just Cause)
  • 5 (Dues Deduction and UWHA Membership)
  • 8 (Health and Safety)
  • 9 (Housestaff Advisory Committee)
  • 10 (Leave – Bereavement)
  • 14 (Leave – Professional)
  • 17 (Management Rights)
  • 22 (Progression by Training Year)
  • 24 (Subordination of Agreement and Authority)
  • Appendixes I-V

We have seen progress on the following issues:

  • The proposed salary increase from the employer has increased from 0% to 2%, though is still much lower than we hope and expect to receive
  • The committee representation structure to ensure resident representation

Among other items, we continue to fight for:

  • Salary: 4% increase each year, with an increase in base salary
  • A fourth week of paid vacation
  • An increased housing stipend
  • An increased Childcare Fund to supplement childcare costs
  • A fully-supplemented UPASS
  • A no questions asked Safe Ride Home program

Notably, the employer’s current proposals include: 

  • Salary: 2% (90 days after ratification), 2% (starting July 1, 2020), and 1% (starting July 1, 2021) increases for the three year contract
  • Housing Stipend: $2,100/year housing stipend
  • Maintaining 3 weeks of paid vacation
  • $100/year travel allowance

Our initial proposals and supportive data can be found on our website

Having a union to fight for our rights and benefits has brought accountability and power to the voices of our resident and fellow members. Our first contract was ratified in November 2016. In this contract, UWHA was able to win: 

  • significant annual salary increases and a signing bonus
  • new housing and parking stipends 
  • full reimbursement for medical licenses and other required expenses
  • an annual education fund for all residents
  • a childcare fund, administered by UWHA
  • a bike transportation fund, jointly administered both UWHA and GME
  • extended paid leave for residents with serious medical issues
  • increased bereavement leave
  • legal protections to prevent residents from unfairly being disciplined or terminated
  • a fair process that guarantees the right to moonlight for all residents

As employees of the University of Washington, and members of the University of Washington Housestaff Association, we continue to encourage potential candidates to come to our institution; however, we encourage each individual to review the salary, benefits, and program and make their decision based on their individual situation. We feel privileged to work at a university with a strong union and we will continue to fight for the fair compensation and rights of our members.