Seattle City Council Unanimously Supports Residents Being Offered a Fair Contract

On April 27th, all nine Seattle City Councilmembers signed a letter of support on behalf of residents and fellows at the University of Washington receiving a fair contract.

The letter was sent to Dr Paul Ramsey, CEO of UW Medicine, and UW President, Ana Mari Cauce.

UWHA graciously thanks each Councilmember for their support and understanding. We agree that, “failing to negotiate such a contract will have long term impacts on our region.”


Send A Support Letter Here:
I am a Ally!
I am a UW Patient Ally!

The resident and fellow physicians of University of Washington have been working under an expired contract for almost a year (expiration: June 30, 2019). During this time, we have been denied raises, having been told before COVID19 began that our 80-hour work weeks and determination to provide the best care to the people of Washington was of little worth to UW. We are asking for fair pay and benefits that align with those of our West Coast peer institutions. 

If you support the underpaid, overworked residents at University of Washington, please join with us in writing a letter to UW Medicine leadership to remind them it’s time for a fair contract. Our residents and fellows deserve better and our community deserves doctors who are wholly focused on their patient care. We are there for you and your health, always. We wish UW was there for us.

You can also show your support by:
1. Following us on social media – Twitter, Instagram, Facebook
2. Making a Donation to UWHA

April 15th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the twenty-eighth bargaining session on Wednesday, April 15th. UWHA sent counter proposals in advance for Articles 6 and 21. The state appointed mediator was in attendance.

Article 6 (Fringe Benefits), Both LR and UWHA have come to agreement on the meal reimbursement amount. UWHA updated language on how the policy would be implemented. UWHA also updated language on the cell phone section to state that if the UW Medicine policy changes, UWHA would be able to bargain. UWHA maintains that residents should have access to fitness facilities at all sites, including the VA. LR removed language about having healthy foods accessible at the VA, to language that says food accessible at the VA will be in line with the meals policy.

Article 21 (Professional Development), UWHA accepted language that programs could implement the professional development funds, either through a stipend or reimbursement; however, maintains that a stipend would need to be higher due to it being taxable. 

Article XX (Union Activities), LR accepted language regarding staff representatives or employees of UWHA. 

Side Letter (GMEC), UWHA updated language to better reflect current policy and the trial period for GMEC alternative representatives.

LR promised to send over a new proposal for Article 18 (Moonlighting) by Monday, April 20th.

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Tuesday, April 21st from 3:00-7:00pm via Zoom. UWHA welcomes all members to attend, please email if you would like to join.

April 9th Bargaining Session

UWHA and UW Labor Relations (LR) met for the twenty-seventh bargaining session on Wednesday, April 9th via Zoom. UWHA presented counter proposals for Articles 1, 2, 6, 11, 21, 23, and 25. LR responded with proposals on Articles 6,11, and 21. Articles 3, 11, and 13 are ready to be Tentatively Agreed (TA) to (upon virtual signature). The state appointed mediator was in attendance.

Article 1 (Childcare), UWHA decreased the financial ask for the Childcare Fund to $100,000; however, continues to propose the Emergency Childcare Fund at $50,000. 

Article 2 (Committees), UWHA removed the representative substitution section for all subcommittees, updated the GME Committee (GMEC) to have a minimum of one UWHA-endorsed resident representative seat, and removed the duty to inform section – stating that minutes, agendas, and communication will be available to UWHA upon request.

Article 3 (Definitions), is ready to be TA’d.

Article 6 (Fringe Benefits), UWHA accepted the employer’s meal reimbursement proposal of $10.00/per meal, starting 7/1/2020. UWHA reduced the relocation stipend to $300 per incoming resident. LR said they have no intention to create a relocation stipend for residents.

Article 11 (Leave-Extended), UWHA updated language to say “Contact UWHA” where links were listed previously. Both UWHA and LR agreed this article is ready to TA. 

Article 13 (Leave – Miscellaneous), is ready to be TA’d.

Article 21 (Professional Development),UWHA decreased the proposal for the  professional development fund to $400/per year, and increased the rollover to a maximum of $2,000. 

Article 23 (Salary), UWHA decreased financial asks to 3/3/3% salary increases, $300/month for chief resident stipend, and $12k/year housing stipend. LR has no responses to this article.

Article 25 (Transportation), UWHA removed the bike helmet reimbursement.LR has no responses to this article.

The next bargaining session is scheduled for Wednesday, April 15th from 3:00-7:00pm via Zoom. UWHA welcomes all members to attend, please email if you would like to join.

Winter Quarter UWHA Bike Fund Reimbursements Due: April 30th

If you’d like to participate in the UWHA CBA Bike Program, please submit documentation to GME ( before April 30, 2020.  Please see below regarding what/how to submit:

Quarterly Bicycle Stipend

What: $25 stipend, given quarterly

Eligibility: UWHA members who bicycle > 80% of the AY20 winter quarter (from January 1, 2020 – March 31, 2020)


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

Bike Helmets

What: A free bike helmet


  1. Submit receipt to GME by e-mail for electronic receipts ( or mail for paper receipts (UW GME Bike Fund, Box 358047)
  2. Costs must have been incurred during the AY20 winter quarter (from January 1, 2020 – March 31, 2020)

Bike Maintenance

What: up to $100 in bicycle maintenance costs.


  1. Submit receipt to GME by e-mail ( or mail (UW GME Bike Fund, Box 358047)
  2. Costs must have been incurred during the AY20 winter quarter (from January 1, 2020 – March 31, 2020)
  3. Examples of reimbursable items: costs of maintenance service, tools, bike tubes, lights, locks
  4. 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:

You must be a member of the UWHA to qualify.  Information about who is covered by the contract is found here:

·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 April 30, 2020 at 5pm.  Late submissions will be held until the next submission window.

Announcing 2020-2021 President-Elect, Brandon Peplinski!

Please join us in welcoming our new President-Elect, Dr. Brandon Peplinski!

Currently, Brandon is an Internal Medicine PGY2 and highly-involved UWHA General Board member. He has been championing resident rights over the past year on our Escalation Team.

We’re looking forward to Brandon stepping into his new role! If you are interested in joining the board this upcoming year, please reach out to #uwha #iamUWHA

Life Insurance for Residents and Fellows

In light of the SARS2 (nee COVID19) pandemic, there is a lot of current anxiety regarding the health of our resident members – in addition to the financial health. What follows is a somewhat macabre summary of some of our benefits with regards to student loans and the protections in place for residents with student loans in the event of death. 

UW offers Basic Group Life Insurance for all resident employees – amount of $35,000. At the time of hiring, and thereafter, there were opportunities to sign up for additional Term Group Life Insurance. The group number for these policies is the UW Group number (email us if you need this). You should have received letters in the mail detailing your coverage and beneficiaries that you have elected. Unfortunately, the MetLife website is frequently under maintenance and it is very difficult to call – “due to high call volumes.” Be prepared for this if you are trying to change your beneficiary elections. 

With regards to loans, federal student loans are disbanded in the case of the borrowers demise: What is needed for this to happen is that proof of death be mailed to the borrower’s loan servicer. 

There are, however, some caveats. If you have a co-signer for PLUS loans, co-signers in the past have been taxed on these PLUS loans as income – form 1099-C. However, this also should (hopefully) be a thing of the past based upon the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, which protects the family and estate of the deceased borrower. 

Unfortunately, private loans and refinanced loans are much more case-by-case and you must refer to the original terms of the loan and plan accordingly. 

Similarly, private consumer debt such as auto loans, credit cards, etc., are case by case. 

This is a macabre and unfortunate topic, I know; but as this pandemic deepens and more residents are exposed, it behooves us to speak to our families and develop plans, just as we recommend to our patients. 


Thank you to Dr. Axel Adams (PGY1, Emergency Medicine) for putting together this information to share

UWHA Condemns the Firing of Dr. Ming Lin

The UWHA fully supports Dr. Ming Lin, a physician who fearlessly advocated for the safety of the staff and patients at PeaceHealth. Disturbingly, PeaceHealth and TeamHealth subsequently terminated him for speaking up. At hospitals across the country, there is a massive shortage of PPE, and many hospital protocols are haphazard, confusing, or even dangerous. When faced with unsafe or unjust conditions, physicians have a professional and moral duty to advocate for what is right for patients and for their fellow healthcare workers. Now is not the time to file paperwork and let these issues trickle up the bureaucratic ladder. These are systemic problems that need to be fixed NOW. We stand in solidarity with Dr. Lin, a physician who did the right thing even though he knew he might be punished for it. Rather than seeking to suppress whistleblowers, employers must engage their employees to collaboratively solve these complex problems. Only by working together, can we ensure that both our patients and co-workers are protected during these challenging times.

Support Letter from UW Radiology Program Director and Faculty

Thank you to all those in Radiology who are standing with residents in support of a fair contract. We highly appreciate your support!

Members: Please encourage your Program Directors to show support – we would love to see Program Directors from every department sign support letters of their own.

Check out the Letter of Support from Internal Medicine Program Directors.

Check out the Letter of Support from the Family Medicine Program Director and Faculty.

Check out the Letter of Support from the Pathology Program Director and Faculty.