Kauai hospital offers nurses new deal
The staff-to-patient ratio remains a point of contention in the three-week walkout
LIHUE » Wilcox Hospital administration officials said they are waiting for an answer from the striking nurses' union after they made an offer yesterday at the first negotiations in nearly a month.
Lani Yukimura, hospital spokeswoman, declined to give details of the proposal, only to say it involved new details.
"The union will make the next move, I guess," she said.
Union officials did not return Star-Bulletin calls seeking comment yesterday evening.
Nurses have been on strike for just more than three weeks at Kauai's lone full-service hospital.
The sticking point has been a system that controls the staff-to-patient ratio at Wilcox.
Two other issues still on the table involve on-call procedures for operating-room nurses.
The administration has already offered a 21 percent raise to bring nurses' salaries to comparable levels on Oahu.
Before the afternoon meeting at a local hotel, nurses packed the Kauai County Council meeting to throw their support behind a nonbinding resolution calling for the two parties to return to the bargaining table, said Aggie Pigao Cadiz, executive director of the Hawaii Nurses Association.
The council passed the resolution unanimously, even though the two sides had already agreed to return to the table last week.
Numerous nurses gave testimony in favor of the resolution, Pigao Cadiz said.