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Strike deferred at UHG

Thursday, 9th March, 2017 10:46am

Strike action scheduled to take place at University Hospital Galway (UHG) earlier this week has been averted.

Nurses and midwives at UHG deferred their strike action planned for Tuesday after the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) decided to ballot its members on revised proposals for addressing staffing, recruitment and retention issues.

Strike action had been looming at UHG after the INMO rejected staffing proposals put forward by the HSE.

The industrial action, which was scheduled to commence on Tuesday 7 March, was to take the form of a work-to-rule resulting in a ban on overtime, cross cover and redeployment.

For the third day in a row the number of patients on trolleys in UHG continued to rise with 47 waiting for a bed yesterday (Wednesday) - the second highest in the country.

41 were waiting for a bed on Tuesday and 35 on Monday.

In a statement, the INMO said they had “unanimously decided” to defer the planned industrial action.

The Executive Council also decided “for strategic reasons” to recommend that members accept the proposals “to secure immediate steps to address the staffing/recruitment/retention crisis existing at this time”.

“The Executive Council, in its assessment of developments, arising from the recent discussions, has also determined that the current agreement is incapable of recognising, and responding, to the extent of the difficulties facing the health service at this time,” a statement read.

“In that context, if the members accept these proposals, the INMO will be approaching the planned discussions, on a successor to the LRA, requiring that any new agreement is constructed to ensure that the labour market challenges, facing nursing/midwifery, can, and will, be addressed in a manner which will resolve the recruitment/retention issue in the medium to long term.”
The organisation will now put in place arrangements for this ballot, in workplaces across the country, with a view to having it completed by the end of March.

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