Contingency plans in place to minimise impact on patients and public at Bay hospitals during Public Services Association – Allied, Public Health and Technical – industrial action | Te Whatu Ora | Health New Zealand | Hauora a Toi Bay of Plenty

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Contingency plans in place to minimise impact on patients and public at Bay hospitals during Public Services Association – Allied, Public Health and Technical – industrial action

10 May 2022

Contingency plans are in place at Bay of Plenty hospitals to help minimise disruption for patients during two weeks of Public Services Association (PSA) industrial action.

Members of the PSA union are currently involved in two weeks of action which is predominantly comprised of work-to-rule measures with the addition of a single 24-hour strike period comprising of a total withdrawal of labour.

Public Services Association (PSA) members nationwide, including more than 400 Bay of Plenty District Health Board (BOPDHB) workers, are eligible to take part. The action relates to those staff employed under the Allied, Public Health and Technical MECA (multi-employer collective agreement) only.

What is happening?

Monday 9 May 8am - Friday 20 May 6pm: work-to-rule action
Sunday 15 May 11.59pm - Monday 16 May 11.59pm: 24-hour full withdrawal of labour

What is work-to-rule?

During this period PSA members will adhere to:

  • Strict observance of agreed start and finish work times, i.e. not starting before or finishing after these times.
  • Taking all entitled breaks, i.e. not working through or during any such breaks.
Will the work-to-rule period affect patients and the public?

No. During the work-to-rule period the DHB will ensure that services continue as normal.

What is happening on Monday 16 May?

The PSA has issued a strike notice on behalf of its members for a 24-hour strike from Sunday 15 May 11.59pm to Monday 16 May 11.59pm. The nature of the strike is a total withdrawal of labour. 

What will the strike on Monday 16 May mean for patients and the public?
  • The LPS (Life Preserving Services) agreement ensures the BOPDHB’s emergency theatres will be operating throughout the period of the industrial action.
  • In addition there will be some planned care in the BOPDHB’s theatres for this 24-hour period but this will be reduced.
  • Any non-medical outpatient appointments planned for this period will also be rescheduled.
  • Affected patients are in the process of being notified or have already been notified.
  • Toi Te Ora Public Health Service is required to have a 24-hour, 7-day a week on-call service for notification of reportable communicable diseases and for the management of border issues related to the Port of Tauranga. An on-call service remains in place during the period of the strike.

“The BOPDHB is involved in contingency planning to mitigate the impact of this industrial action and has finalised the Life Preserving Services (i.e. those services which are defined as providing care for the preservation of life and the prevention of disability),” said BOPDHB Executive Director Allied Health, Scientific and Technical and Contingency Planner Sarah Mitchell.

“Ensuring the safety of our patients and staff is paramount throughout this period of industrial action and all affected services have contingency plans in place for it.

“The BOPDHB accepts the right of individuals and organisations to take industrial action, however we do regret any inconvenience which may be caused to the people we serve,” she added.

Which services are affected?

Around 20 services are affected and include: Occupational Therapy, Social Work, Dietetics, Audiology, Pharmacy, Addiction Services, Speech and Language Therapy, Newborn Hearing Screening, Vision Hearing, Podiatry, Cardiology services, Clinical Engineering, Toi Te Ora Public Health, Dental Services, Community Care Co-ordination and Support Net, Anaesthetic Technicians and Sterile Services Technicians, Mental Health, Te Pare о̄ Toi – Te Pou Kōkiri staff, Counselling Services, Community Health and Medical Day Stay.