THE Cebu Puericulture and Maternity House (CPMC) has stopped accepting patients since last month.

The hospital management decided to conduct a “precautionary closure” due to an ongoing labor dispute with the Cebu Maternity House Independent Employees Union (CMHIEU).

Lawyer Cornelio Mercado, who represents the hospital management, told Sun.Star Cebu that the hospital has not been accepting patients since last month.

Mercado said they have referred to other hospitals patients who were supposed to avail themselves of perinatal package programs in their hospital.

Dispute

Mercado explained that the temporary closure of the hospital was due to the worsening dispute between the management and the employees’ union, which has led to the filing of a notice to strike.

Mercado said that conflict between the management and employees is creating a “hostile environment” in the hospital.

He said that even the doctors agreed to the temporary closure of the hospital.

But Fundador Alforque, CMHIEU vice president, said that even if the hospital closes itself to patients, they will still continue to come in and work as usual.

Alforque said the situation would not have worsened had the management given in to their demands.

He said they decided to file a notice of strike before the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) last Jan. 4 after the management allegedly committed unfair labor practice and bargaining in bad faith.

He claimed that the management and CMHIEU agreed to implement a P20-P25 wage increase for its 2015 Collective Bargaining Agreement.

But even if the results of the meeting were recorded, the management allegedly refused to honor what was agreed upon.

P1 increase

The management wants to offer a P1 increase to their employees, including nurses, midwives, laboratory technicians, and other health personnel.

Alforque said that negotiations between them and management continue, but he threatens that a strike looms if the management refuses to heed what was agreed during their meeting.