St. Charles Bend Nurses Ratify New Contract


St. Charles Bend nurses represented by the Oregon Nurses Association have voted in favor of ratifying a new four-and-a-half year contract.

“We are happy to have reached a contract agreement that both the nurses and St. Charles leaders feel good about,” said Debbie Robinson, chief nursing officer for St. Charles Bend. “While it took many months of conversations, we ended in a good place and we are all ready to come together and continue doing what we do best – providing quality care for our patients.”

Now that the contract has been ratified, St. Charles and the ONA will work together to develop processes to put the new contract language into practice in the coming weeks.

“The newly ratified contract helps ensure we are providing the best quality care for our community,” said local nurse leader and ONA bargaining unit chair David Hilderbrand, RN. “We look forward to taking the next step of implementing the new contract and utilizing the new tools provided to address shared concerns like staffing and practice standards, which allows us to focus on our patients.”

Some highlights from the new contract include:

  • New groups have been created so nurses float between similar departments, providing more flexibility for staffing and ensuring every patient is treated by nurses trained to meet their specific needs.
  • Creates a shared governance structure to increase accountability around staffing and practice issues. The new shared governance model will allow direct-care nurses and managers to work together to quickly address practice concerns.
  • Nurses can be hired into St. Charles at step levels that are consistent with their years of experience, which will enhance recruiting efforts.
  • The teams reached a fair agreement on wages and benefits. Offers variable cost-of-living increases to provide financial flexibility for the hospital while helping recruit and retain nurses.




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