2 March 2012:
New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) members working in all public hospitals have voted to accept a new multi employer collective agreement (MECA).
This MECA covers more than 23,000 nurses, midwives and health care assistants. Members voted to ratify the settlement at meetings across the district health boards (DHBs) from February 14 to March 1.
The new agreement provides for a number of improvements, including a wage increase of 4.5 per cent over the term of the agreement (effective: 2% 01/03/12, 1.5% 01/03/13 and 1% 01/03/14), a 36-month term (March 1, 2012 - February 28, 2015), a lump sum payment for enrolled nurses to transition to a revised scope of practice, a commitment from DHBs to the care capacity demand management (CCDM) programmes, the ability to transfer sick leave between DHBs, as well as a number of other improvements.
“NZNO members working in DHBs have a new collective agreement which provides them with some certainty and security for the next three years,” NZNO industrial adviser Lesley Harry said.
“Our members are committed to working to improve our hospitals though making them safer for staff and also for patients. The work of the Safe Staffing Unit will be extremely important during the term of this collective agreement,” Harry said.