Dozens of unionized health-care administrative staff rallied outside a Halifax hospital Monday in a push to get the province to negotiate a new contract.

The scene was repeated at 10 other hospitals across the province by workers who do such things as patient appointment scheduling, and health record data entry.

More than 5,000 workers rejected a contract offer in June and have been without a new deal since Oct. 31, 2020.

Sandra Mullen, president of the Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union, says workers want a wage increase that keeps up with inflation.

Mullen says contract negotiations are set to resume Oct. 11 and says talks continue with the provincial health authority on establishing an essential services plan for a potential strike.

Provincial legislation says certain workers in the health-care sector have to be designated as essential before their union can call for work stoppages.