JUNIOR DOCTORS ARE to go on strike in hospitals across the country on 25 September.
The Irish Medical Organisation served formal notice of the strike this evening after around 1,000 non-consultant hospital doctors (NCHDs) voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action over their chaotic working hours.
The IMO said that as well as the one-day action, there will be a series of rolling strikes in at least one hospital in each region in the country every week beginning from Monday 30 September.
“This has been an extremely difficult decision for doctors to make and we would not be in this position were it not for the inaction and prevarication of the Department of Health and the HSE,” said IMO representative Dr John Donnellan.
Doctors have said that emergency services will not be affected. The IMO said the strike action is to force the HSE to deal with the issue of “dangerously long working hours once and for all”.
A key part of the demands of junior doctors is for the HSE to comply with the European Working Time Directive, which reduces the working week to an average of 48 hours. Junior doctors regularly work up to twice as many hours per week, and frequently on shifts lasting more than 24 hours each.
The IMO is calling for an end to shifts of more than 24 hours.
Originally published 16:50