Governor Kitzhaber Announces Agreement Between Hospitals and SEIU to Engage Frontline Workers and Improve Care

SEIU agrees not to pursue health care related ballot measures in 2014

Today Governor Kitzhaber announced that Legacy Health, Providence Health & Services, OHSU, PeaceHealth, Kaiser Permanente NW, and the Oregon Nurses Association have agreed to meet with SEIU and the Governor’s Office to accelerate progress toward the health care “Triple Aim”: 

  • Improving the patient experience of care, including quality and satisfaction;
  • Improving health; and 
  • Reducing the per capita cost of health care.

As a result of this agreement, SEIU will not pursue its five health care related ballot measures in 2014.

SEIU and the hospitals, along with other parties, will come together in a series of conversations aimed at exploring partnerships that can improve our health care system.

"This agreement moves our shared health reform goals forward far better than a multi-million dollar ballot measure fight. I appreciate the willingness of SEIU and the hospitals to work together and move this conversation away from political combat," said Governor Kitzhaber. "I believe that the hospitals and SEIU have enough common interests and shared values that we should be able to work together to achieve the goals of the Triple Aim through ongoing engagement of frontline workers."

"We appreciate the Governor’s leadership in finding a way forward and focusing on the common ground we share on behalf of our patients and the communities we serve," said Dave Underriner, Chief Executive for Providence Health & Services Oregon Region and Chair-Elect of the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems. "We look forward to productive conversations on how we can collectively continue our efforts to improve patient care, improve the health of our communities and lower overall costs within the context of health care transformation."

"Our members care about quality, transparency and a voice in the care they deliver,"  said Meg Niemi, President of SEIU Local 49. "As healthcare workers, we know our members can uniquely contribute to these priorities as well as the larger health reform efforts in Oregon.  Ballot measures represent just one way to move this agenda and we are pleased to engage in this collaboration as an alternative path forward in 2014."

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