WSNA was notified this week that a major restructure/​rebid is taking place in all of the Med-Surg units for all that are not already on 12-hour shifts. These include: 2‑South, 4‑South, 7th Floor, and 9th Floor. This change has not been presented to the Nurse Staffing Committee.

We have demanded a meeting with manage­ment to inquire what the ratio­nale is and what business reason is driving this drastic change.

Per WSNA contract article 8.1.1, the hospital may be violating the contract.

8.1.1 If a nursing unit does not now have ten (10) or twelve (12) hour shifts, a majority vote of the unit would be required prior to imple­menting ten (10) or twelve (12) hour shift sched­ules for the unit on an invol­un­tary basis.

While some nurses may welcome the change, not all nurses have the stamina to work 12-hour shifts. More and more, nursing research shows that 12-hour shifts may lead to increased nurse burnout and job dissatisfaction.

We pointed out the following to hospital admin­is­tra­tion and will be addressing this.

The finan­cial impli­ca­tions of a decrease in FTE can be drastic. Nurses are scared about poten­tial pay cuts if there aren’t enough 0.9 FTEs. Being forced from a 1.0 to a 0.9 FTE, or 0.8 to 0.75 FTE will affect your wages. Losing your evening shift differ­en­tial will impact many.

Residents who are in their repay­ment period signed contracts and bid on patterns that stipu­lated work hours and FTE. Those who are unable to continue due to family or other oblig­a­tions are scared at the prospect of having to repay the hospital the full amount.

Everyone would likely agree that leaving a child in daycare for more than 12.5 hours plus travel time is never in a family’s best inter­ests and inter­feres with brain devel­op­ment in children under the age of 3. This also creates an increased finan­cial burden for having to utilize longer hours in child­care. Families with children in daycare/​childcare are by law limited to 10 hours, but the law makes excep­tions” due to work hours and travel time. However, you took this 8‑hour position because it worked for you and your family’s schedule. Probably most of you have made plans around your work sched­ules. Some of you may be in school or involved in your children’s sports activ­i­ties, and have been doing well at maintaining a positive work-life balance.

We under­stand further that manage­ment traveled to Hawaii and hired nurses under contract. During staff meetings, currently employed nurses were told that the new nurses had signed contracts for a 0.9 FTE. WSNA believes that all new hires should have been held until the rebids were complete to offer currently employed nurses optimal choices. For those nurses coming in as new hires, seniority must be factored and currently employed nurses cannot be displaced. We have requested copies of the contracts signed by these newly hired nurses.

For those that simply cannot work 12-hour shifts, we will be demanding that the hospital allow you to select a vacant position. We have requested a list of all units that currently have 8‑hour shifts. If there are no 8’s and you have no other options, we will demand that the hospital allow you to select the option to be laid off. This would include access to unemployment.

Please follow the direc­tive to submit your rebid selec­tion so that you don’t miss the timeline, November 26, 2019.

We have made an exten­sive infor­ma­tion request to continue to inves­ti­gate this and to advocate on your behalf. We will be in touch as soon as we learn any new information.

Please continue to send your questions and concerns to Hanna Welander, WSNA Nurse Rep at hwelander@wsna.org or call (206) 575‑7979, Ext. 3035.