KPSC Labor Relations

KPSC Labor Relations

An Important Message for Our NUHW-Represented Psych-Social and Healthcare Professionals Employees

June 29, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

These last few months have been especially unsettling and emotional as our communities and members face the COVID-19 pandemic, economic vulnerability, and protests against racism and social injustice. Your work is an exemplary reflection of how the people of Kaiser Permanente have stepped forward to meet the needs of patients no matter the situation. We thank you for delivering such exceptional care in these challenging times.

With the conclusion of collective bargaining, we now have new agreements in place focused on collaboration at all levels to improve and evolve our care. Most importantly, we are ready to resume our collaborative process to advance the model of mental health and health care for our members.

Thank you for all you’ve done and that you continue to do to help our members and patients improve and maintain their health, every day, and in the face of current challenges. We look forward to our work ahead to transform mental health care together.

Thank you.

Frank Hurtarte
Senior Vice President, Human Resources
Kaiser Permanente Southern California
Health Plan and Hospitals

Annie Russell, RN
Chief Operating Officer
Southern California Permanente Medical Group

Decertification Activities, Protected Speech, and KP’s Neutrality

June 1, 2020

A message from Frank Hurtarte, SVP, Kaiser Permanente Southern California Health Plan and Hospitals, and Annie Russell, RN, COO, Southern California Permanente Medical Group:

We recognize that the decertification election in NUHW’s Healthcare Professionals bargaining unit, as well as an ongoing campaign in the Psych-Social Chapter, are of great interest and importance to employees. Kaiser Permanente is neutral in these efforts.

We are aware that over the past few months, some of our employees created a website and began sending email and other messages to their co-workers regarding decertification. This is speech protected by Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act, and our Electronic Assets Usage Policy does not prohibit employees from sending such emails to their co-workers. Section 5.3.4. of the policy specifically provides that “This provision does not apply to communications made by employees during non-working time that are protected under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act.” While we have not blocked these messages, this does not mean that Kaiser Permanente supports the views expressed in them. Employees who do not want to receive such messages may block them using Outlook’s “Block sender” feature.

Kaiser Permanente has not in any manner supported or encouraged these efforts. We continue to respect our employees’ rights to choose their representation, if any, to express their opinions and to receive, exchange, or decline information concerning union representation. For that reason, and consistent with our practice, Kaiser Permanente remains neutral.

Kaiser Permanente Southern California’s Summary of Last, Best, and Final Offer to NUHW Psych-Social Chapter

Below are highlights of Kaiser Permanente’s offer as of April 21, 2020.


Economics

Across the Board Increases and Lump Sum Payments:

  • A wage increase of 3% for 2018
  • A wage increase of 2% for 2019 and a 1.5% cash payment
  • A wage increase of 2% for 2020 and a 1.5% cash payment

The 2018 increase and the 2019 increase and the cash payment are effective upon ratification.

A Performance Sharing Bonus of up to $5,000 for 2020 and 2021

A Ratification Bonus of 1% will be paid to full-and part-time active employees employed on the date the new contract is ratified.

Retiree Medical Health Reimbursement Account

Increased to $2,000 per year of service

Tax Deferred Retirement Savings

Effective January 1, 2021, employees hired after 1/1/15 (i.e., employees who have defined contribution only) will receive an employer match of up to three percent (3%) of the employee’s qualifying contribution to their retirement savings accounts. This is in addition to the existing Kaiser Permanente employer contribution equal to six percent (6%) of the employee’s eligible compensation. No changes to pension or DC match for employees hired prior to 1/1/15.

No changes to Active Medical Programs

Annual Dental Coverage

Effective January 1, 2021, the dental plan participants’ annual maximum will be increased to $1,500 per calendar year. Also, effective January 1, 2021, the lifetime maximum for child orthodontia will be increased to $1,500.

Alternate Mental Health

Effective January 1, 2020, the Alternate Mental Health coverage will cover 80% of reasonable and customary charges, inclusive of both inpatient and outpatient, with no maximum number of visits.

Benefits by Design Voluntary Programs

Effective January 1, 2020, the Benefits by Design Voluntary Program will be made available to eligible employees on an after-tax basis. Available options may include: long-term care insurance, legal services insurance, additional term life insurance, identity theft maintenance, and auto, homeowners’, and pet insurance.

Wage Differential Enhancements

Differential increases for Evening Shifts, Night Shifts, and Standby Pay.

Market-competitive adjustments to wage scales

Market adjustment increases to wage scales for Psychiatric Registered Nurse professionals with associated minimum requirements for the position to align with other Southern California nursing professionals. Practice & Staffing

Practice & Staffing

Immediate Relief (within 30 days of contract ratification)

  • Staffing with temporary agency resources and therapists where available to assist with return access.
  • Staffing with temporary agency psychiatric RNs for triage where indicated. Increased supplemental staffing resources (temporary, per-diem, agency) for an immediate increase in internal capacity.

Office practice support (as indicated)

  • Appointment clerks
  • Clerical resources
  • Extender roles

More recruiters and staff working to fill mental health positions.

More rapid expansion and refresh of mental health offices, facilities.

SCAL Care Navigators

20 additional FTE positions (LCSW/MFT) for the Southern California Care Navigator rollout and implementation will be created to provide immediate access relief. The positions will be added as soon as administratively possible in relation to individual medical center start-up operational needs.

New Job Classifications

Two new classifications have been proposed: Developmental Psychologist and Neuropsychologist. Both classifications will be paid 5% above the current Psychologist wage scale. Also, an additional 5% differential will be paid to Neuropsychologists who obtain and provide proof of valid Neuropsychology board certification. Professional Development & Growing the Workforce

Professional Development & Growing the Workforce

Increased tuition reimbursement to $3,000/year

Student Loan Repayment Program

  • Graduates of accredited bachelor’s or master’s level programs would receive a $10,000 lifetime repayment for qualified student loans related to education in mental health professions, with a maximum reimbursement payment of $2,500 per year.
  • Graduates of accredited doctorate level programs would receive $20,000 lifetime repayment for qualified student loans related to education in mental health professions, with a maximum reimbursement payment of $5,000 per year.
  • Current employees with at least a .80 FTE, who have an existing college school loan(s) from an accredited college/university receiving a bachelor’s, master’s or doctorate degree in the field of mental/behavioral health, are eligible to apply for this program.
  • This program is for loans already incurred as of June 1, 2019.

KP investments to support

  • Post graduate Fellowship & Residency programs
  • Expansion of KP’s master’s practicum and post-doctorate programs
  • Grants to fund clinical research
  • Grants to expand college degree programs in mental health

Download PDF

Kaiser Permanente Southern California’s Summary of Last, Best, and Final Offer to NUHW Healthcare Professionals Unit

Below are highlights of Kaiser Permanente’s offer as of April 21, 2020.


Economics

Across the Board Increases and Lump Sum Payments:

  • A wage increase of 3% for 2018
  • A wage increase of 2% for 2019 and a 1.5% cash payment
  • A wage increase of 2% for 2020 and a 1.5% cash payment

The 2018 increase and the 2019 increase and the cash payment are effective upon ratification.

A Performance Sharing Bonus of up to $3,000 for 2020

A Ratification Bonus of 1% will be paid to full-and part-time active employees employed on the date the new contract is ratified.

Retiree Medical Health Reimbursement Account

Increased to $2,000 per year of service.

Tax Deferred Retirement Savings

Effective January 1, 2021, employees hired after 1/1/15 (i.e., employees who have defined contribution only) will receive an employer match of up to three percent (3%) of the employee’s qualifying contribution to their retirement savings accounts. This is in addition to the existing Kaiser Permanente employer contribution equal to six percent (6%) of the employee’s eligible compensation. No changes to pension or DC match for employees hired prior to 1/1/15.

No changes to Active Medical Program

Annual dental coverage

Increased to a maximum of $1,500

Alternate Mental Health

Effective January 1, 2020, the Alternate Mental Health coverage will cover 80% of reasonable and customary charges, inclusive of both inpatient and outpatient, with no maximum number of visits.

Increased tuition reimbursement to $3,000/year with $750 of the total usable for travel which brings this benefit on par with other roles.

Wage Differential Enhancements

Differential increases for Evening and Night Shifts, and Bilingual Pay.

Download PDF

Reaffirmation of KP’s Last, Best, and Final Offer to NUHW Healthcare Professionals

April 16, 2020

To our valued Audiologists, Speech Pathologists, Dieticians, and Health Educators,

We hope this letter finds you and your families well during these unprecedented times. Our thoughts and gratitude are with you as you continue to provide essential care for our patients. Your safety, and the safety of our members and the community, remain our priority as we continue to take the necessary steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and deliver needed care. By meeting patients where they are – sheltering at home in most cases – you have fulfilled our members’ needs for important health services in a way that has helped to significantly reduce the risk of community spread of COVID-19.

Over the last several months we have continued to work through our neutral mediator with NUHW leadership to close contracts in our mental health and healthcare professionals bargaining units. Yesterday we reaffirmed the substance of our last, best, and final offer presented last year on September 5, 2019. We stand behind this offer which includes generous and competitive annual wage increases, lump sums, and benefits enhancements.

As you know well, we’ve been working now for more than 18 months without a contract and we think it’s time to bring this to a close and move forward. With so much uncertainty in the world today, securing a contract provides much needed economic and professional recognition that we stand ready to provide.

We are extremely thankful for the work that you are doing and appreciate your expertise, the collaboration, and flexibility you demonstrate every day for our patients. Please continue to let your manager know if you have questions or need assistance.

With best wishes for your health,

Frank Hurtarte
Senior Vice President, Human Resources
Kaiser Permanente Southern California
Health Plan and Hospitals

Annie Russell, RN
Chief Operating Officer
Southern California Permanente Medical Group

Reaffirmation of KP’s Last, Best, and Final Offer to NUHW Psych-Social Chapter Employees

April 16, 2020

To our valued Mental Health Professionals and Registered Nurses,

We hope this letter finds you and your families well during these unprecedented times. Our thoughts and gratitude are with you as you continue to provide essential mental health care for our patients. Your safety, and the safety of our members and the community, remain our priority as we continue to take the necessary steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and deliver needed care. By meeting patients where they are – sheltering at home in most cases – you have fulfilled our members’ needs for important mental health services in a way that has helped to significantly reduce the risk of community spread of COVID-19.

Over the last several months we have continued to work through our neutral mediator with NUHW leadership to close contracts in our mental health and healthcare professionals bargaining units. Yesterday we reaffirmed the substance of our last, best, and final offer presented last year on September 5, 2019. We stand behind this offer which includes generous and competitive annual wage increases, lump sums, and benefits enhancements, as well as specific steps to address our shared interest in improving the quality of care we provide to our members and patients. We’ve outlined significant investments to increase the number of people entering mental health care professions and staying and growing in their chosen fields and proposed collaborative workgroups to redesign the mental health model of care.

As you know well, we’ve been working now for more than 18 months without a contract and we think it’s time to bring this to a close and move forward. With so much uncertainty in the world today, securing a contract provides much needed economic and professional recognition that we stand ready to provide.

We are extremely thankful for the work that you are doing and appreciate your expertise, the collaboration, and flexibility you demonstrate every day for our patients. Please continue to let your manager know if you have questions or need assistance.

With best wishes for your health,

Frank Hurtarte
Senior Vice President, Human Resources
Kaiser Permanente Southern California
Health Plan and Hospitals

Annie Russell, RN
Chief Operating Officer
Southern California Permanente Medical Group