Allina physicians' unionization among largest in US

More than 400 primary care physicians affiliated with Minneapolis-based Allina Health System have voted to unionize, potentially creating the largest private-sector physicians union in the U.S., according to The New York Times.

Around 400 physicians and 150 nurse practitioners and physician assistants working at Allina clinics voted to unionize and will be represented by the Doctors Council, an affiliate of the Service Employees International Union. The vote was 325 in favor, 200 not in favor and 24 other ballots challenged, according to the Times.

"This is a win not only for the doctors that stood together and the supporters who rallied alongside them but also for the patients and communities they serve," said a statement posted on the Doctors Council website.

One of the main issues driving the decision to unionize was chronic understaffing, which the physicians felt led to burnout and higher risk of mistakes. More than 100 physicians from an Allina hospital voted to unionize earlier this year due to concerns about length-of-stay guidelines threatening patient care.

Allina, a 12-hospital system with more than 90 clinics in Minnesota and Wisconsin, is appealing the vote, according to the Times.

"While we are disappointed in the decision by some of our providers to be represented by a union, we remain committed to our ongoing work to create a culture where all employees feel supported and valued," said a statement posted to Allina's website. "Our focus now is on moving forward to ensure the best interests of our employees, patients and the communities we serve."

Union action has been heating up in healthcare overall among nurses and workers, focused on compensation, working conditions, burnout and patient care. On Oct. 13, Oakland, Calif.-based Kaiser Permanente and a labor coalition representing thousands of the health system's workers struck a tentative deal after a three-day strike. The deal includes a 21 percent pay raise over the life of the contract and protective terms for subcontracting and outsourcing labor, among other issues.

Copyright © 2024 Becker's Healthcare. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Cookie Policy. Linking and Reprinting Policy.


Featured Whitepapers

Featured Webinars