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BOP Junior Hospital Doctors To Go On 24-Hour Strike In May

Junior doctors at Whakatāne and Tauranga Hospitals will soon swap their doctors coats for picket fences.


They'll join 2500 junior doctors going on strike, for 25 hours on May 7th.


It comes after pay talks between Te Whatu Ora and the Residents Doctors Association, were put on hold.


The union said most doctors would get up to 25% pay rises, but 300 doctors would get pay cuts.


Union secretary Deborah Powell said they won't accept a deal, which sees some doctors get less pay.


"Our members are united in not accepting a pay deal which would cut the pay of any Resident Doctors, especially at a time when the RMO workforce already has 500 vacancies and we struggle to fill the current number of GP training places," Powell said.


But Te Whatu Ora's chief people officer Andrew Slater disputes the union's pay cut claim.


"In our initial negotiations we have guaranteed that no RMO (registered medical officer) will receive a pay cut," Slater said.


Two non-pay elements are unresolved in bargaining, the Residents Doctors Association said.


"Te Whatu Ora have not offered any contractual commitment to the agreed principle that the system should retain resident doctors as senior doctors," Powell said.


Powell also said Te Whatu Ora has not committed to work to phase out consecutive long days on rosters.


Consecutive long days mean doctors work two back to back 15 hour shifts in a weekend, plus extra work during the week.


Further discussions between Te Whatu Ora and the Union are scheduled for next week.


"Resident Medical Officers are a vital and valued part of the Health NZ workforce," Slater said.


He said Te Whatu Ora are prepared to make a very significant investment to settle the dispute.


Slater said hospitals are working on contingency plans "to ensure the delivery of health services should the strike action go ahead."


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