By DON McINTOSH
Oregon Nurses Association (ONA) announced Jan. 5 that another unit of employees at Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) is ready to join. The unit consists of over 600 nurse practitioners, nurse midwives, and physician associates (conventionally known as physician assistants). Collectively the workers are referred to as “advanced practice providers.” They work at OHSU locations across the state, including Portland, Eugene, The Dalles, and Klamath Falls. ONA already represents more than 3,000 registered nurses at OHSU.
Because OHSU is a public employer, under state law it has to recognize the union based on “card check” — when a majority of the unit signs union authorization cards.