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No consultant status for years… Doctors prepare for strike

DUBLIN: Doctors in Ireland go on strike in protest of years of non-acceptance of the demand for consultant status. The doctors are preparing for the strike as part of a 20-year-old campaign to promote doctors who specialize in public health to the rank of consultant.

In the first phase, the Irish Medical Organisation, led by 60 doctors, will strike from Monday. However, the concerned sources said that the patients will not be cared for.

The IMO will also hold discussions with the HSE and the Department of Health after the Irish Medical Organization (IMO) Public Health Committee meeting on Monday.

At the same time, the union says it’s sad to have to prepare for a strike.

The IMO points out that the lack of action on the part of the health department despite doctors announcing that they will go on strike indicates the negligence that doctors face even during a pandemic.

Doctors involved in COVID-19 prevention activities in nursing homes and schools are preparing for the strike. The strike of the doctors, who plays a crucial role in contact tracing, is a challenge to the health department.

Due to their lack of consultant status, they are paid 48% less than other colleagues. They have been raising their voices for the last 20 years to fill this gap.

Currently, these doctors are paid €111,822. But, Type-A hospital consultants are paid between €141,026 and, €195,653. Doctors are of the opinion that this discrimination in work for years is unacceptable.

At the same time, the IMO said that the health department should hire more doctors and that other doctors are supporting the doctors’ struggle for the position of consultant.

Dr. Ina Kelly, chairwoman of the IMO Public Health Committee, said the doctors were preparing for the strike to ensure and optimize public health care in Ireland.

It is unacceptable that professionally trained doctors are not given the status of consultants. Ms. Kelly said it is the duty of the government to ensure that doctors provide the services and facilities they need while them providing the services they need and that this discrimination faced by doctors is unacceptable.

At the same time, countries around the world are ready to hire me as a consultant after evaluating his clinical experience and training, said Dr. Geraldine McDarby. However, Mr. McDarby, Ireland’s first Health Service Improvement Fellow, recently graduated from the Public Health Medicine Expert Training Program, said it’s completely unfair not to recognize it in Ireland.

McDarby says they have to go to foreign countries to be recognized and hired as consultants. 

Meanwhile, the Department of Health said it is committed to creating consultant roles in public health. The Department of Health says HSE has developed a detailed framework for future public health models to include consultant roles.

The draft was submitted by the Health Minister to the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reformon November 19. An outline on this regard was submitted by the Health Minister to the Minister of Public Expenditure and Reforms on November 19.

The health department said the issue could be resolved under PSSA conditions and that the strike should be called off.

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