Limerick hospitals staff back industrial action

IMPACT members working at the Limerick group of hospitals have balloted in favour of industrial action following the concerns expressed by the union about corporate governance and senior staff salaries in the hospital group.

90% of the staff balloted voted in favour of taking the industrial action. 

The action will involve a refusal to report to the manager of the hospital group. IMPACT assistant general secretary Andy Pike explained “This industrial action is designed to highlight the opposition of hospital staff to the excessive and unwarranted salary payments to a senior manager through a management consultancy. It is not envisaged that the action would affect the delivery of services in any way.

“The HSE director general has said the mid-west hospital group needs additional administration staff to provide vital services to patients. The money spent employing just one management consultant would cover the costs of at least five clerical staff to help the hospitals cope with increasing demands. In these circumstances, staff very much resent reporting to a senior manager who is being paid at least twice the correct rate for the job,” he said.

IMPACT welcomed a decision last week by the Dáil Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to ask the chiefs of the HSE and Department of Health to investigate the sanction of a €250,000 salary for one senior manager in the Limerick hospitals group.

The union had written to PAC chairman John McGuinness last month to set out its concerns on corporate governance and senior staff salaries in the hospital group. Mr Pike said any proper investigation would show the expenditure – which is being channelled through a management consultancy – was unjustified.

The five hospitals in the group where staff have balloted for industrial action are Limerick Regional and Limerick Maternity hospitals, Nenagh and Ennis General hospitals and Croom Orthopeadic hospital.