Hospital wants labor deal to reflect ‘challenging environment for rural healthcare providers’

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 23 February 2015 at 12:00 am

MEDINA – The union representing about 300 workers at Medina Memorial Hospital wants a federal mediator to help resolve a labor impasse with Orleans Community Health, the parent organization of the hospital.

A labor agreement expired on Dec. 31, 2014. Open issues in the current talks include wages, benefits, and recognition at future locations of the Medina based organization, said the employees’ union, 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East.

Orleans Community Health released this statement today, saying it wants an agreement with employees that reflects “the challenging environment for small rural healthcare providers.”

“Orleans Community Health (OCH) is currently engaged in contract negotiations with 1199 SEIU,” according to the statement. “The union has requested a Federal Mediator. A Federal Mediator is usually called in when the parties cannot reach agreement. The union told OCH at the table that they are still able to make proposals and engage in bargaining.

“With decreasing inpatient volume and changes in healthcare reimbursement, this is a challenging environment for small rural healthcare providers in Western New York. We look forward to reaching agreement with 1199 SEIU that takes into consideration the challenges we face today and over the next three years.

“Orleans Community Health is committed to continuing to provide access and quality patient care to our community.”