Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation
PRESS RELEASE Monday, February 6, 2017
- The INMO has advised Health Service management that proposals have to be radically improved to form the basis of any further discussion
Negotiations, with regard to bringing forward measures to address the acknowledged staffing/ recruitment/ retention crisis in nursing and midwifery adjourned this evening without agreement. This is as a result of a total management row back on their previous commitment for a funded workforce plan for 2017.
The talks, which involved the HSE/Department of Health/DPARS and the INMO/SIPTU Nursing, have been taking place, over the past three weeks, for the purpose of securing the necessary new initiatives which would begin, in 2017, in restoring the nursing/midwifery workforce, at least to 2007 levels, in the context of ever increasing demands for service, increased overcrowding, bed closures and curtailed community services.
At the talks this afternoon Health Service management:
- Refused to allow Directors of Nursing and Midwifery fill all posts which become vacant during 2017;
- Refused to guarantee that sufficient funding would be made available to allow the permanent employment of all Irish trained nurses and midwives graduating in 2016/17; and,
- Refused to guarantee replacement of maternity leave vacancies on a one for one basis.
The net effect of this is that the crisis remains and will continue to destabilise the delivery of safe patient care.
The INMO Executive Council is scheduled to meet, this Wednesday, February 8, to consider the current position in the context of the recent national ballot, for industrial action, in pursuance of initiatives to address the current crisis. Unless there is a radical improvement in the next 24 hours it is probable that the Executive Council will, in the context of this adjournment, take a collective decision to serve notice, for industrial action, on all health employers.
The INMO initiated these discussions, clearly saying that in the absence of measures to restore the nursing/midwifery workforce, to that required to meet patient/client need, then the health service will have to contract services to that appropriate to the available staffing levels.
The INMO remains available for further discussions, on these critical issues, but the context for these discussions must be a funded workforce plan, for 2017, which is wholly managed, at workplace level, by the Director of Nursing/Midwifery.