MOCA 3: 22 February meeting update

Posted February 23, 2012 by Alex Scott

It is pleasing to advise that MOCA 3 negotiations will not be suspended during the caretaker government period as has occurred in the past. The parties will continue to explore options for resolution of issues within interest areas in the Interest-based bargaining (IBB) format.

A bargaining plan has been agreed to by all parties and is now being circulated to principals for their signature. QH and ASMOFQ are still to finalise their list of participants and when the document is complete we will be able to post it to our website. This document will give members a better idea of the nature of the IBB process being engaged in.


Eligibility for 4/5 weeks leave and 5/6 weeks leave

Recreation leave entitlements appear in the Award however there is inconsistent application of the Award and all parties agreed they share an interest in clearly defining the entitlements to ensure consistent application.

The parties noted that the Award is written with 5 weeks as the default with one week being in lieu of penalty rates on public holidays because most employees would be part of a roster that would require work to be done on public holidays (including on-call). However where there is no requirement for service to be provided on public holidays and MOs are not rostered to cover the holidays 4 weeks leave is applicable.

Together raised a concern that employees who have 5 weeks leave and who take recreation leave on public holidays do not have those public holiday credited to their leave balance. Our members consider there should be an option to choose either 5 weeks leave in lieu of penalty rates or 4 weeks leave with penalty rates to avoid being penalised for agreeing to working on public holidays.

Together also raised concerns about inconsistent application of the additional weeks leave (the 6th week) for RMOs who do continuous shift work. The Union has dealt with issues in the past where RMOs are rostered for night shifts in blocks and because individuals do not do night shifts throughout the whole year they are only given a pro rata entitlement of the additional weeks leave. This is not appropriate where an individual is part of a roster that has shifts covering days, evenings, nights, week days and weekends.

QH has undertaken to scope the practices occurring before working on options to resolve the issue and also to clarify the appropriate application of the Award.


Eligibility for ED extended hours allowance

When the ED 25% allowance was introduced in 2006 it was stated to apply only to work in an extended hours arrangement in EDs (which were the only units working those extended hours at the time).

Recently, a number of Acute Primary Care Clinics have been established drawing staff from EDs and the question arose as to whether work in an APCC attracted the 25% allowance also. It has been clarified that it does not however where an employee of an ED is required to work on an ad hoc (not rostered) basis in an APCC they will not lose their entitlement to the allowance for those hours worked on an ad hoc basis.


Regional Development Incentive Scheme (RDIS)

Both QH and the Unions identified an interest in finding better ways to recruit and retain MOs to specific regional areas with recruitment problems. The RDIS in the past two agreements has caused many problems that the parties would like to avoid in future. Options will be discussed at a future meeting


Part-timers entitlements to Motor Vehicle Allowance

A major area of interest identified by the parties was recruitment and retention of Medical Officers and equity.

Together raised the first item in the equity category – part-time entitlements to the Motor Vehicle Allowance. Currently a .5FTE SMO will receive about 25% (not 50%) of the allowance received by a FTE and those with less than a .5 FTE appointment receive no allowance.

Three years ago in negotiation of MOCA2 QH was prepared to rectify this inequity; however delays attributable to another participant at the time took the negotiations well into the period of the global financial crisis and the offer was taken off the table.

QH undertook to revisit this matter – having an interest in reviewing entitlements for part-time employees taking account of parity, retention and the future trends for workforce mix.


Next week Together will continue to outline a number of issues and options for resolution under the heading of recruitment and retention and equity.

We hope you continue to follow our blogs and give us your feedback as we go. The blog is an innovation to the union’s bargaining plan and represents an unprecedented opportunity for Medical Officers to participate in real-time in the negotiations by emailing your comments to  It is important too that you are talking to other members in your workplace about the negotiations and encouraging non-member colleagues to join. The more involvement from grass roots membership the better outcomes we will achieve together.


Authorised Alex Scott, Secretary, Together.
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