Catholic Health hospital workers to get 18% raise

Members of 1199SEIU have approved a new three-year contract with Mercy Hospital in Rockville Centre, N.Y.

The agreement covers more than 500 staff working in dietary, transport, patient care, housekeeping, pharmacy and other areas of the hospital, according to an Oct. 20 union news release shared with Becker's. It is the third contract for Mercy Hospital staff, who unionized in 2017.

"This is the biggest win since we voted to join the union. People said it couldn't be done, but we did it," Manny Oxilus, a clinical laboratory associate, said in the release. "This contract has competitive wages and benefits that will help attract new talent and workers — and better staffing means better patient care."

Under the contract, workers will receive an 18% wage increase over the life of the deal. 

Workers may also use an improved Catholic Health Select Plan that includes no premiums, no copays for physician visits, no copays for treatment at Catholic Health emergency departments and no copays for treatment at Catholic Health urgent care partners, the union said. 

Additionally, the contract includes increases to night and evening differentials; a larger uniform allowance and additional pay for designated caregivers who provide training; and Martin Luther King Jr. Day as an additional paid holiday and the option to take Juneteenth as a paid holiday. 

Catholic Health shared the following statement with Becker's: "We are pleased to conclude these negotiations in an amicable fashion. This agreement brings the salaries at Mercy Hospital closer to those of other employees in our health system. We are especially pleased that the union appreciated the value of our employee benefit plan which is offered to the overwhelming majority of employees in our health system. We remain committed to offering all of our employees competitive salaries, affordable benefits and the best working conditions possible."  

Catholic Health system, based in Rockville Centre, operates six hospitals, three nursing homes, a home health service, hospice, and a network of physician practices on Long Island.

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