Fellow Med-Pros: Getting Paid for Dept. Meetings

Heretofore, if any of us had to come in for a meeting on our off day, mandatory or not, we were allowed to clock in and get paid “education” hours (our base hourly pay only).

Yesterday we were informed that unless the meeting is mandatory, we would no longer be allowed to clock in or to be paid, and that if we missed too many of these meetings, it would reflect poorly on our merit increases.

Without naming the hospital chain I work for, let me just tell you that this involves only my department (Respiratory Therapy), and this is not a hospital-wide policy. Nursing Service will still be allowed to be paid for their meetings, in other words.

When I asked why our department was being singled out, I was told it was for budgetary reasons.

Can they do this? More importantly, if we’re actually on hospital property, and not on the clock, what kinds of liabilty issues would be raised?

I wasn’t sure if this is the correct forum, as it is a general question which calls for opinions, but thanks for your consideration.


Ask for it in writing…and get a lawyer. Threatening someone for refusing to work off the clock IIRC is very, very, illegal If they pulled this on the whole RT dept (which in a decent size hospital could be quite a few bodies) you could have a class action suit that could cripple even a major hospital.

Thanks, drachillix. Good advice.

What is so astounding is the fact that they will be imposing this on only the RT departments hospital wide (there are 7 hospitals in our system), and not the rest of the medical services such as nursing, lab, radiology, etc.

And then the implied threat that if we don’t show up for these non-mandatory meetings, it will reflect poorly on our evals.

Unbelievable. Even given the fact that Georgia is a “right to fire” state.


Quasi, I remembered something from my days at the Mega Whopper Engineering Co. about professionals and overtime.

There is something in the labor laws about professional (salaried?) employees being ineligible for overtime. Otherwise the engineering co. would actually have to pay for those 60-hour work weeks :eek:

They solved the problem of meetings by having them at lunch time. They gave us a $5 sandwich, we gave them an hour of our time.

I’m an hourly not salaried employee.


oops 'scuse me then …

I agree with drachillix that it seems illegal.

Do you have a union?

Update: No union, but now we have been told this new policy doesn’t only affect my department, but all departments system-wide.

So while the meetings may not be mandatory, if we don’t show up for them because we know we aren’t going to be able to clock in, come merit increase-time we will be screwed for missing the meetings we have heretofore been paid to attend.

Thursday I got up 2 hours early to attend one of the “mandatory” meetings. I usually go to work at 6:30 PM, so that means in order to be there on time, I got up at 3 PM. It will be a real “incentive” to go to those damn things to become “better educated” in how to do my job if I’m not gonna be paid for it anymore.

I bet the Georgia Department of Labor is gonna be called in on this one!

One other thing: Even though our HMO deductions haven’t gone up, the cost for ER visits have increased 100%. That means that after the first of the year, if I I can’t get in to see my private doc, I better be prepared to pay 100 dollars out of pocket for an ER visit instead of the 50 I now pay.

This won’t mean anything to anyone who’s not in the health-care field, but I would be interested in hearing from others of you who are and are facing the same difficulties.



I’m a nurse, and have never heard of mandatory meetings without pay.
It is definitely illegal in my view.

beajerry, the mandatory meetings will be paid for. It’s the others (the staff meetings) that won’t be paid.


You mean it’s illegal to give credit at merit-increase time for having attended educational meetings if one was not paid for attending those meetings?

Good point, Yeah. That case seems much less reprehensible. However, they were told…

I’d say that this is clearly a threat to [BOLD]negatively[/BOLD] impact the performance evaluations of those who do not attend, not a suggestion that credit would be given to those who did attend.

The statement (as the OP described it) was clearly made as a “threat” against the non-attenders, not a “promise” to the attenders. Make sense? Maybe a subtle difference, but very important IMHO!

“The statement (as the OP described it) was clearly made as a “threat” against the non-attenders, not a “promise” to the attenders. Make sense? Maybe a subtle difference, but very important IMHO!”

I guess this is why we have lawyers and judges.