The INMO says the planned work-to-rule by 30,000 members is still due to go ahead from next Tuesday
Unions representing Irish nurses have returned to negotiations at the Workplace Relations Commission ahead of planned industrial action - due to begin next week.
The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) said the planned work-to-rule by 30,000 members is still due to go ahead in hospitals around the country from next Tuesday.
The INMO executive is due to meet on Saturday to discuss any progress in the current round of talks.
SIPTU nursing and midwifery representatives are also taking part – and organiser Paul Bell said the negotiations are challenging for all involved:
“Well our colleagues in the INMO have taken the decision that industrial action is necessary to progress these issues,” he said.
“SIPTU has not balloted members although we are in dispute with the HSE on the issues of staff retention and staff recruitment.
“That is why we want to continue on our negotiations with members with the HSE in conjunction with our colleagues in the INMO.”
This planned work-to-rule will mean a ban on overtime, no cross-cover or redeployment to fill-in for absent colleagues.
Support staff involved in the potential strike include porters, cleaners and security personnel.
The long running dispute is over staff recruitment and retention – with unions calling for new initiatives to begin restoring the nursing/midwifery workforce to at least 2007 levels.
The INMO has said staffing deficits are compromising patient care and negatively impacting on the health and safety of nurses and midwives.
Meanwhile 396 patients were waiting for treatment on trolleys and in wards around the country today.
Cork University Hospital was the worst affected with 31 patients on trolleys while the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital in Dublin had 23 patients on trolleys.