Union wants nursing-scheme meeting with Health Minister

SIPTU has today requested a meeting with Health Minister James Reilly to demand that the controversial graduate nursing scheme be dropped.

The programme aims to recruit new graduates on 80% of the previous salary scale.

SIPTU wants Minister Reilly to focus on alternative cost-saving proposals instead, such as the direct employment of nurses, rather than the use of agency nurses.

The union, which has labelled the scheme "degrading", estimates that less than 100 graduates have applied to take part in the scheme, which offers pay of less than €22,000 a year.

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