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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. In 2022, where 21 members were active, and 4 left the council. New elections will take place in 2024. 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

The three division committees are:

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

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

  • Committee 3: Facilitating 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 2022 were: Change Plan Primary Obstetrics, Change Plan The Facility Worker Unburdened, finances and the renovation of UMC Utrecht using the Strategic Accommodation Development Vision (SOH), the policy for employees with a positive PCR test, and the Healthcare of Tomorrow.

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

The Education and Research Council (O&O council) is the employee-representative body for academic teaching and research at UMC Utrecht, with rights based on the Dutch Higher Education and Scientific Research Act (WHW).

The O&O council consists of 18 members: nine UMC staff members (together forming the ‘O&O committee’) and nine students who form the Student Representative Council (SRC) . The Education and Research committee and the SRC meet and discuss separately every fortnight, and together every four weeks. The Education and Research committee, consisting of five Works Council members and four additional members who work as university lecturers or researchers, sit for a three-year term. The students sit for one year. New elections will take place in 2024 for the Education and Research council and the Works Council. SRC elections take place each year.

The daily board of the Education and Research council consists of two staff members and two students and is elected annually by the council. The chair of the Education and Research council as well as the chair(s) of the SRC are students. The daily board, together with the official secretary, coordinates the work of the Education and Research council and conducts agenda consultations with the dean and vice dean. There are three permanent committees: Education, Research, and Strategy & Finance, which prepare dossiers, hold informal meetings with the dossier holders, and consult with staff and/or students. Each O&O council member sits on one committee.

The O&O Council looks at UMC Utrecht's policy on university education and research. In 2022, the O&O Council consulted at least five times with the dean and vice dean of the Faculty of Medicine of Utrecht University on Education and Research topics.

In the 2021-2022 academic year, the SRC had two international members from the Graduate School of Life Sciences, and meetings were therefore held bilingually (NL/EN) with the help of an interpreter. Besides the language policy of the SRC, the following topics received special attention this year: the welfare of students and PhDs, quality funds, Research ICT, the composition of program committees, the Faculty Quality Guide for Education, the revision of the curriculum of the Medicine, Biomedical Sciences, and Clinical Health Sciences programs, hybrid education, the distribution of NPO funds for education and research, and the launch of two new programs: a Bachelor program in Care, Health and Society and a Master program in Medical Humanities, the main lines for the faculty budget, the UMC budget, and the temporary move due to the renovation of the Hijmans van den Bergh building.

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. The Client Council works on the basis of a longterm plan entitled ‘More person, less patient: From patient participation to person-oriented care’. The Client Council each year publishes an annual report on the UMC Utrecht website.

The Client Council gathers monthly for a plenary meeting, which is joined every two months by a member of the Executive Board. Monthly consultations also take place with (the Chair of) the Executive Board and (the Chair of) the Client Council. The Client Council also meets annually with the Supervisory Board, and a member of the Supervisory Board nominated by the Client Council, regularly joins the plenary meeting. There were also smaller group (portfolio) consultations on specific topics. The Executive Board of UMC Utrecht asked the Client Council to advise on nine proposed decisions. Furthermore, at the request of the Client Council, the Executive Board decided to add a Patient Effect Paragraph (PEP) to every policy decision. The PEP describes the effect on patients and how patients were involved in reaching the decision. The Client Council promoted and supported the creation of the Patient Input Office to offer a course on patient participation in healthcare, education and research. At the request of the Client Council, a read-aloud button was also added to 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.

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 monthly with the Chair of the Executive Board.

The Staff Assembly for instance advised on major UMC Utrecht-wide trajectories like Quality Cooperation and the Healthcare of Tomorrow. 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 vitality and sustainable employability of medical specialists regularly came under discussion. The performance of Individually Functioning Medical Specialists (IFMS) within UMC Utrecht was also discussed by the Staff Assembly. In this regard, the Staff Assembly works closely with the P&O department.

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 addition, the VAR organizes nursing lunch forums eight times a year where an important nursing topic is presented and attendees can interact with each other. The VAR also has a weekly walk-in hour for all questions from nurses (both for review and for assistance).

The VAR daily management meets weekly, the broad representation with all VAR members meet monthly, and a reduced leadership team also meets monthly. Policy days take place twice a year, to which ambassadors are also invited. For information and inspiration on internal and external developments, speakers and members themselves are given the floor. The daily management is monthly in contact with the Chair of the Executive Board

In 2022, the VAR focused for instance on the positioning of nurses and the Future-proof Nursing program, the professionalization of nurses, nursing leadership, the promotion of nursing research, and professional pride. This all came together at moments like Care Day when the VAR organized workshops for all professionals and a career fair under the title ‘The Resilient Professional’. The annual Nurse of the Year election also took place on this day. 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 the Major Incidents