Mission Hospital nurses approve 1st union contract

Registered nurses at HCA's Mission Hospital in Asheville, N.C., ratified their first union contract July 2.

Under the three-year contract with the National Nurses Organizing Committee, an affiliate of National Nurses United, Mission RNs will receive wage increases of up to 7 percent in the first year and up to 17 percent total, based on experience, over the life of the agreement. NNU says the contract includes a grid guaranteeing regular increases.

Mission Hospital will form a Professional Practice Committee made up of a dozen union RNs, who will review patient care conditions at the hospital and suggest improvements, in line with the contract. The hospital will also gain a separate staffing committee, in which union nurses and management will equally participate in reviewing hospital staffing levels and approve any changes in staffing patterns.

Contract language also contains provisions related to personal protective equipment and workplace safety, including a requirement that the hospital provide proper PPE for nurses that complies with "the strictest federal, state, and local guidelines" and additional security for violence prevention, according to the union. 

Mission Hospital RNs voted to join NNU in September 2020, months after petitioning the National Labor Relations Board for a union election in March. 

Mission Health was acquired by Nashville, Tenn.-based HCA Healthcare in 2019.

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