- A strike of some 7,000 New York nurses came to a close Wednesday night when the hospitals and union reached deals on new contracts, according to a release from the New York State Nurses Association.
- Nurses at Montefiore Bronx and Mount Sinai Hospital won enforceable staffing ratios in both deals — a key point of contention in negotiations — according to the union.
- Nurses at both hospitals returned to work Thursday morning.
Nurses at Montefiore Bronx and Mount Sinai Hospital chose to wage an open-ended strike with no set end date and nabbed deals just three days after walking off the job.
Agreements over staffing levels were key to making deals and ending the strike, union leaders said on a call with reporters Thursday.
The deal at Montefiore includes staffing ratios in the emergency department of one nurse to two patients in critical care, one nurse to five patients in acute care and one nurse to eight patients in sub-acute care, according to NYSNA.
It also includes the addition of 170 new nursing positions, and financial penalties for noncompliance with staffing guidelines across all units, according to the union.
Union leaders did not outline exact details on how enforcement mechanisms and financial penalties will work when the hospital fails to comply with new staffing agreements, though said they would release more information in the coming days.
At both hospitals, nurses won salary increases amounting to 19% over the course of the contract, union leaders said.
That’s in line with raises granted to the nurses at other New York hospitals who intended to strike but reached deals before Monday.
A sticking point during negotiations involved New York state’s staffing law that passed last year, which requires hospitals and nursing homes to form clinical committees tasked with setting annual staffing standards for units.
Union leaders said implementation and enforcement is still spotty, and nurses have pushed for stronger staffing terms in contract agreements.
Originally, nurses at eight New York hospitals intended to strike, though six of those hospitals made deals and averted a work stoppage.
The Mount Sinai and Montefiore nurses still need to vote to ratify agreements.
Editor’s note: This story has been updated with information from a NYSNA press conference Thursday morning.