Nurses to resist HSE saving measures31/08/2012 - 07:16:37
The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation says it will resist new cost saving measures announced yesterday by the HSE as they jeopardise patient safety.
The Health Service Executive says it plans to impose €130m worth of cuts between now and December in an effort to reduce its budget deficit of €259m.
The plans include cutting the use of agency staff by 50%, cutting overtime by 10% and reducing home help hours by 5.5%.
General Secretary of the INMO Liam Doran says his members will make sure to let management know exactly how these plans are affecting patient safety on the ground.
"We're going to direct all of our members on a daily basis to identify risk, record risk, and make that risk known to their employers and consultant staff.
"We cannot have a situation where you cut the number of nurses, midwives and support staff in a ward and at the same time have consultants and other managers think you can maintain the same quality of service."
Meanwhile, SIPTU, which represents home help workers, says it will strongly resist these HSE cutbacks and is not ruling out industrial action.
Around 10.7 million hours of home help is currently being provided to patients around the country - but this is now being reduced by 600,000 hours.
SIPTU Organiser Ted Kenny says: "We had had a labour court recommendation which guaranteed contracts of employment to our members employed as home helps.
"We have been in discussions with the HSE in order to guarantee the hours of work for home helps. On one hand, those negotiations are on-going and on the other the HSE have announced they are going to further cut home help hours.
"It is totally unacceptable and we are going to resist it very strongly."
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