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Employee Representation

UMC Utrecht has the following formal Employee Representation bodies:

Works Council

UMC Utrecht staff members are represented in a Works Council. The Works Council meets weekly, and committee meetings take place every other week. Once every six weeks, a consultation takes place with Executive Board representatives. The Works Council reports to UMC Utrecht staff members on activities and results in an annual report on the UMC Utrecht intranet.

Works Council members serve for a three-year term. An election was held in 2021, where 13 members were reelected, and 12 new members elected. The Daily Management (chair, vice chair, secretary and deputy secretary) coordinates the activities of the Works Council and holds agenda meetings with the manager. Three division committees and four theme committees prepare documents, hold informal meetings with managers, and consult staff members. Each Works Council member sits on at least one division committee and one theme committee. The Works Council is supported by a secretariat that consists of three staff members.

The three division committees are:

  • Committee 1: Brain, Internal Medicine & Dermatology, Julius Center, Images & Oncology, Information & Finance, Information Technology and the Education Center

  • Committee 2: Children, Laboratories, Pharmacy & Biomedical Genetics, Women & Babies, Concern Staff Executive Board, Staff & Organization directorate, and Quality & Patient Safety directorate

  • Committee 3: Services, Heart & Lung, Surgical Specialties, Vital Functions

The four theme committees are:

  • Finance and Strategic Policy

  • Social Policy and Working Conditions

  • Safety, Health, Welfare & Environment

  • Education & Research

The Works Commission is furthermore represented in a number of forums by Works Council members or people with specific expertise. Examples include the Complaints Committee, the UMC Utrecht staff provident fund, and the National Meeting of UMC Works Councils.

Some of the important topics that were handled by the Works Council in 2021 were: A change plan for Marketing and Communication, a change plan for P&O, a new Risk Inventory and Evaluation (RI&E) procedure, the selling of staff housing, and the policy for organizational changes.

The Education and Research Council (O&O council) and the Student Representative Council

The The Education and Research Council (O&O council) is the employee-representative body for academic teaching and research at UMC Utrecht. The O&O council is a statutory body with rights based on the Dutch Higher Education and Scientific Research Act (WHW). The O&O council consists of students (who together also form the Student Representative Council ) and staff members of UMC Utrecht. Together, they monitor the UMC Utrecht policy on education and research.

In 2021, the O&O council consulted at least five times with the Medical Faculty Dean and Vice-Dean on educational and research topics. Elections were held in 2021 for the staff delegations on the O&O council. Nine enthusiastic lecturers and researchers were elected. New challenges are already awaiting them. The problems that students and lecturers encounter as a result of longterm online teaching imposed by government measures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the new UMC Utrecht talent policy for researchers, the distribution of NPO funds for education and research, preparations for the temporary move of education due to the renovation of the Hijmans van den Bergh building, and the launch of two new programs (a Bachelor’s degree in Care, Health and Society, and a Master’s degree in Medical Humanities), are all topics that will receive particular attention this year.

Client Council

UMC Utrecht has its own Client Council by virtue of the Law on client representation in health-care institutions (WMCZ). The Client Council advises the Executive Board on anything that affects the interests of patients at UMC Utrecht. The council has also been asked to help promote patient participation within UMC Utrecht. The aim is to involve hospital patients in a far broader sense than merely via the Client Council in anything that happens at UMC Utrecht.

In 2021, the Client Council had eleven plenary meetings, as well as monthly discussions with the Executive Board. The Client Council also had one meeting with the Supervisory Board. In addition, consultations took place in smaller groups (portfolios) on specific topics. The Chair of the Client Council together with the Chairs of the Nursing Advisory Council (VAR) and the Staff Assembly took part until mid 2021 in the weekly update on capacity planning and the organization of corona care at UMC Utrecht. One member of the Client Council was also a member of the Longterm Care Vision project group. The UMC Utrecht Executive Council asked the Client Council to give their advice on eleven proposed decision. The Client Council also drew up a longterm plan with the title ‘More human, less patient: From patient participation to personalized care.’ Each year, the Client Council publishes an annual report on the UMC Utrecht website.

Members of the Client Council are members in their own personal capacity. New members of the Client Council are recruited by UMC Utrecht. Each member of the Client Council may serve a maximum of two four-year terms. A chair and an official secretary are in charge of meeting agendas and ensure that all commitments are met. The Client Council got a new chair in 2021.

Staff Assembly

The Staff Assembly consists of medical specialists from all fields who come together to safeguard the quality of patient care. The Council of members, the representative consulting body of the Staff Assembly, gives the Executive Board solicited and unsolicited advice on developments in medical fields and administrative affairs that pertain thereto.

The Staff Assembly meets twice a month. The Chair of the Staff Assembly joins the meeting once a month. In addition, the daily management of the Staff Assembly meets once a month with the Chair of the Executive Board.

The Staff Assembly for instance advised on major UMC Utrecht-wide trajectories like Quality Cooperation, the Strategic Development Vision for Accommodation, and how to deal with the implementation of standard HiX content. The Staff Assembly also gave input for the CLA. This emphasized the importance of a good CLA for the entire team, in other words all UMC Utrecht employees, and - especially in this time of COVID-19 - vitality and sustainable deployability of medical specialists regularly came under discussion. The performance of Individually Functioning Medical Specialists (IFMS) within UMC Utrecht also falls under the responsibility the Staff Assembly. In this, the Staff Assembly works closely with the P&O directorate.

Nursing Advisory Council

The Nursing Advisory Council (VAR) is an advisory body appointed by the Executive Board to give advice – solicited or unsolicited – on matters that concern nursing care. The VAR includes nurses, nurse specialists, and team leaders from various divisions and departments, and forms the mouthpiece for all nursing staff at UMC Utrecht. The VAR aims to expand and reinforce the impact of nursing within UMC Utrecht. Nursing leadership is central to this. The goal is to improve and guarantee the quality of care. The VAR liaises with all care divisions and informs nurses on current topics that are relevant for their profession.

In 2021, the VAR’s focus was for instance on the positioning of nurses and the Future-proof Care program, the professionalization of nurses, nursing leadership and pride, and the stimulation of nursing research. The VAR brings out an annual report on the UMC Utrecht intranet on activities and results.


Besides the aforementioned forums, the following committees are also active at UMC Utrecht: Medical Ethics Committee (CME), Medical Ethic Testing Committee (METC), Animal Experimentation Committee (DEC), Decision/Complaints Committee (external), Incident-Reports Committee (MIP), and Major Incidents Committee.