May 28, 2010

Protecting quality public health care top bargaining priority

BURNABY – After two days of discussions about a new contract for health science professionals, some progress was made on non-monetary issues related to protecting quality health care. The union bargaining association (Health Science Professionals Bargaining Association) tabled contract language on whistle-blower protection for health care professionals who speak up about illegal practices at work that put patient care or employee safety at risk.

“As this government cuts important health care services, it’s crucial that our members are able to raise concerns regarding the care of our patients without fear of repercussion,” says bargaining committee member and CUPE 4816 President Frank De Waard. Health authorities are having difficulty providing services to the public without proper funding.

Health Sciences Association launched a campaign this week to raise awareness about the continued growth of waiting lists for diagnostic tests. The campaign consists of a series of radio spots, online video, flash web banners and social media tools directing the public to

CUPE’s community health sector has begun work on a public relations campaign that they hope to launch in the next few months.

Bargaining for a new collective agreement for B.C.’s health science professionals, the trusted members of the modern health care team who deliver the highly specialized diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitation services patients depend on for their good health, began in April. The collective agreement expired March 31, 2010.

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