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Nurse Negotiations

Visiting nurses suing Baystate Health

Nurses at Baystate Visiting Nurse Association and Hospice, including at least one Greenfield resident, are suing parent company Baystate Health over a dispute about overtime.

The nurses — about 45 in number, who work in Springfield and Ware and are represented by the Massachusetts Nurses Association — claim that they have not been paid for work done between patient visits, including preparation and follow-up reporting.

It’s a completely separate dispute than the one happening at Greenfield’s Baystate Franklin Medical Center — where Baystate Health and the state nurses association are clashing over whether to set up overtime pay in a daily or weekly format.

In a class action complaint filed in Hampden Superior Court, nurses, including Greenfield resident Christine Clark, said that they aren’t paid for computer-based work between patient visits — which usually pushes their weekly total beyond the 40-hour threshold.

David Schildmeier, spokesman for the nurses, said that the visiting nurses have raised the concern to management multiple times and were out of options to retain the lost money.

But Steven Bradley, a vice president in the Baystate Health system, said that nurses compile their own hours and are paid for all hours they submit. He insists there hasn’t been a single grievance about this issue in the past two years.

“This latest potshot is just more proof of the MNA/NNU (National Nurses United)’s single motivation: to force its contract demands upon our organization and our community. It’s clear that they are prepared to pursue that agenda at any cost, up to and including destroying our reputation and our organization,” he said.

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