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 The leading web portal for pharmacy resources, news, education and careers April 19, 2019
Pharmacy Choice - Pharmaceutical News - Fico calls on Slovak nurses to keep working, withdraw notices - April 19, 2019

Pharmacy News Article

 1/30/16 - Fico calls on Slovak nurses to keep working, withdraw notices

Adds more information about deployment of military's nurses in paras 811.

Bratislava, Jan 29 (CTK) Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico today called on nurses to withdraw the notices they handed in massively in protest against planned changes in their salaries, but he did not promise them that their demands would be accepted.

"I would welcome it if the nurses returned to the patients. A new government may talk to them about a further pay rise," Fico said after meeting the representatives of the protesting nurses.

The parliamentary election will be held on March 5.

The trade union of nurses and midwives said the hospitals will not be able to treat patients properly due to the departures of 600 nurses as of February and further more than 100 as of March.

It said, however, the nurses were ready to start negotiating about a compromise.

About 13,000 nurses work in Slovak hospitals.

A total of 1200 nurses handed in their notices originally, but about a half of them have withdrawn them.

The hospital in Prerov, east Slovakia, which is the third largest town in the country in terms of population, has asked the military for assistance.

Some 300 nurses in the hospital have handed in their notices, which is the third biggest number in the country.

"It is by no means a state of emergency. The hospital in Presov has asked the military for possible help in order to preserve the planned health care," media quoted Peter Bubla, spokesman for the Health Ministry.

He said the Slovak military has 39 nursers who are deployed in hospitals if need be.

Fico said Slovak health care would function in a standard regime even despite the possible departures of the nurses.

The dispute between the government and the nurses started last year after the parliament dominated by Fico's party SmerSocial Democracy passed a new bill on remuneration of medical staff.

The union minds that the pay does not take into account the employees' professional experience.

Fico said the salaries of nurses would go up thanks to the bill.

He said 55 million euros would annually go to the pay rise. Especially the salaries of nurses from nonstate clinics would be increased, he added.

Health Minister Viliam Cislak said previously the meeting of the nurses' demands would require an additional 135 million euros annually.

Nurses in big hospitals earn about 1000 euros a month, while the salaries of those from nonstate medical facilities are even lower than the average monthly wage of 859 euros.

The nurses found inspiration for their action in the procedure of doctors who similarly secured higher salaries for themselves in 2011.

Apart from nurses, part of teachers went on strike this week, six weeks before the election.

The situation in Slovak schools and healthcare facilities influenced the election campaign that has primarily focused on the migrant crisis until now.


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