US medical facilities strike dealOn 25 Jun 2002 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Oneof the world’s largest partnership deals helped a US health- care providerimprove productivity and avoid industrial action.ProfessorThomas A Kochan, speaking at the Modernizing Employment in the 21st CenturyConference last week, said an agreement was formed between 26 local unions andcovers 62,000 staff at more than 400 medical facilities around the US.Hesaid the deal, known as the Kaiser Permanente partnership, had proved extremelybeneficial for the organisation and staff.Thepartnership, initially negotiated in 1997, contributed to cutting the time ittook to build a hospital, and increased patient satisfaction after major inputfrom frontline staff.Employeesalso used the partnership agreement to suggest improvements to procedures thathelped halve the operation turnaround time for patients.Thepartnership also saved an optical lab threatened with closure after workerscame up with new ideas to improve productivity and a union supervisor was movedinto a key management position. This prevented a strike, reduced breakage andeventually increased revenue by $5.5m.Kochansaid partnership deals were still rare in the US and even in the case of KaiserPermanente, only about 25 per cent of staff had been involved with, or evenheard of the partnership. He said the scheme, which costs about $12m to run,still struggles to get employer and employee buy-in despite its successes. Related posts:No related photos.