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Private acute negotiations update

Private acute negotiations update

St Vincent’s Private Hospitals Melbourne

Sixty-five per cent of St Vincent’s Private Hospitals Melbourne staff have voted to approve an improved proposed enterprise agreement with a nine per cent wage rise to be paid between July 2021 and July 2024.

The wages offer ensures pay parity with public sector nurses and midwives.

Other proposed improvements include a staged increase of paid parental leave from 11 to 14 weeks over the life of the agreement. There is also an improved annual leave request process.

It includes an improved and enforceable ‘nurse and midwife workload clause.’

It will also require one nurse unit manager (one EFT) appointed in each ward/unit of each campus.

Importantly employees required to undertake on call will not be directed to undertake ‘close on call’ and reside away from home during an on-call period if they live further than 20 minutes away from work; it will be explicitly undertaken by choice. Employees who elect to undertake ‘close on call’ will be paid a $120 close on call allowance per 12-hour period in addition to any other allowances.

Members sent a strong message to management to improve its offer by rejecting an earlier proposed EBA in a ballot held in July.


ANMF and Healthscope have had a number of meetings for a replacement EBA.

Healthscope had undertaken to provide a comprehensive offer for ANMF members’ consideration at three member meetings scheduled for 7 and 8 October 2021. Whilst the day- and night-time meetings occurred and were well attended by members Healthscope had not provided an offer for member consideration.

At the time of writing, no specific written offer had been made by Healthscope

Cabrini Health

Cabrini Health management has proposed a four per cent wage offer over a two-year agreement which will not maintain pay parity with public sector wages.

Members are seeking superannuation payments during parental leave which is a structural change to improve the retirement savings of parents, particularly mothers, who take significant time off work to have children. Cabrini is instead proposing two weeks additional leave as a return-to-work bonus following a period of paid parental leave.

Cabrini’s offer includes improved transition to retirement entitlements which maintain superannuation contributions at the pre-transition rate. ANMF members continue to seek the preservation of accrued long service leave when transitioning to retirement.

Members are also seeking earlier access to long service leave at seven years which is an important measure to prevent burnout and retain an experienced nursing and midwifery workforce.

Cabrini’s proposed improvements thus far include additional paid breaks during overtime shifts, a recall travel allowance and a two per cent qualification allowance for educators who have the Certificate IV TAE.

Family violence leave will also be extended from five to 10 days.

Other improvements include the ability to substitute public holidays to attend NAIDOC events and jury service leave will be extended to cover night shift employees. There will be no limit on purchased annual leave.

ANMF is scheduled to meet with management again on Friday 8 October 2021.


Weekly drafting meetings continue with Ramsay management and ANMF. Once a wages offer is received a comprehensive update will be provided to members.

Healthe Care

ANMF and Healthe Care have reached in principle agreement on a large number of improvements, but there is still no agreement on wages.

A members’ meeting on 6 September agreed to extend the formal wage offer deadline for Mulgrave and Epping Hospitals until the end of September 2021. At the time of writing members were expected to consider the employer’s proposal on Wednesday 6 October 2021.

Aurora Health, which is owned by Healthe Care and runs South Eastern and Brunswick Private Hospitals, has proposed a 9.3 per cent wage increase over four years and a significant number of improvements to the current agreement. This agreement covers Healthe Care’s rehabilitation and mental health business. ANMF members met on 17 August and supported putting the proposed agreement to a vote of all employees. The draft agreement is currently with management for final review before the employee access period commences.

ANMF’s EBA negotiations with Healthe Care will result in three agreements – one to cover the acute side of the business (Mulgrave and Epping Hospitals), one to cover the rehabilitation and mental health business (Aurora Health/ South Eastern and Brunswick Private Hospitals) and one to cover Healthe Care’s three-day procedure centres (Hobson Healthcare).

Jessie McPherson Private Hospital

ANMF is continuing to meet with the management fortnightly. A hospital-wide members’ meeting was held on 17 September. A further members’ meeting will be scheduled once management has confirmed its offer.

Mercy Palliative Care

ANMF and Mercy Palliative Care management have had preliminary discussions with a view to adopting the general public sector EBA outcomes.

Geelong Withdrawal Unit

This service owned by the Salvation Army currently has no enterprise agreement.

Nurses are paid general public sector rates and provided with Nurses Award conditions.

Members have endorsed a log of claims. ANMF expects a meeting with the employer to be confirmed soon.