Friday, 6th January 2017
May I begin this note, the first of 2017, by, despite everything, wishing you, and your families, a very happy and healthy 2017 and I hope you had an enjoyable Christmas period.
In relation to a number of important matters, arising at this time, I wish to advise you of the following;
1. NATIONAL CAMPAIGN - STAFFING/RECRUITMENT/RETENTION
As previous advised, and following the recent National Ballot, members voted by 90% to support a campaign of industrial action, including days of strike action, in pursuit of special initiatives to address the staffing/recruitment/retention crisis facing nursing/midwifery.
In that regard I can now confirm that the INMO is due to meet, with representatives from the Department of Health and the HSE, on next Thursday afternoon, 12th January, to begin initial discussions on how to address the current crisis.
Members are asked to note that this meeting is subject to all acute hospitals having restored the Time Plus One Sixth Premium, to nurses/midwives who work after 6pm, and confirmation that monies have actually been paid, reflecting the fact that this premium has been restored from 01 January 2016.
If the meeting, on staffing/recruitment/retention, proceeds then it is likely that it will lead to intensive discussions in subsequent days. This will be for the purpose of responding to our demand for special measures, under all three headings, to address the current severe shortage of nurses/midwives.
We will, of course, keep members fully advised, following the meeting on the 12th, of any developments and any further discussions that follow.
2. ED / HOSPITAL OVERCROWDING
As you will have seen the level of overcrowding, in our acute hospitals, reached record levels, earlier this week, with 612 people, admitted for care, finding themselves on a trolley in an Emergency Department or on in-patient wards.
In response to this the INMO has demanded a number of emergency measures including;
The Emergency Department Taskforce met, this morning, to discuss the critical situation and the HSE confirmed that it is seeking to open 63 additional beds, 60 stepdown beds and increase access to diagnostics and private healthcare facilities, on a temporary basis, to ease the situation.
In response to these measures, which the organisation view as wholly inadequate in the context of the current crisis, the INMO has stated the following;
In addition the INMO specifically sought the following;
The issue is now to be discussed at the meeting, scheduled for the 12th January, referred to above re staffing/recruitment/retention.
The INMO will monitor the situation, over the weekend, with a view to holding further discussions, with the HSE/ Department of Health, on the issue on an ongoing basis early next week.
3. INMO SUPPORT
Over recent days we have received reports which suggest that some hospital managements are attempting to interfere with normal terms and conditions of employment for members i.e. cancelling days off at short notice/deferring annual leave etc.
Members are reminded that they should make contact with the INMO, immediately, if any efforts are made to impose, unilateral, changes with regard to time off / planned leave etc.
If members are in doubt, with regard to how to respond, to any such demand from management, they should also make contact with the organisation for help/guidance and support if necessary.
Thanks you for your attention to this note and further updates will issue, on all the foregoing matters, in the coming days.
Attn all INMO Members. National Campaign Update
INMO to commence ballot for Industrial Action
Presentation is available to members here if you use your INMO website login and password.
Calls for immediate action