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Workers at five mid-west hospitals are refusing to cooperate with their manager

It’s part of a dispute over the manager’s pay.

IMPACT MEMBERS AT a group of five hospitals in Limerick are refusing to report to or cooperate with their manager as part of industrial action.

The action which begins today is in protest against what IMPACT say is a €250,000 salary paid to the group’s operations manager.

The five hospitals affected are Ennis general hospital, the Mid-Western Regional hospital in Limerick, Limerick Maternity Hospital, Croom Orthopaedic Hospital and Nenagh General Hospital.

The work-to-rule means staff will refuse to acknowledge instructions from the manager, provide data to him, cooperate with changes directed by his office, or agree to relocate, redeploy or change assignments if instructed.

IMPACT say that the action will not affect service delivery at the hospital but warned that the action “could escalate if staff are penalised for refusing to work with the manager”.

IMPACT assistant general secretary Andy Pike says that the hospitals in question need additional administrative staff and the protest aims to highlight what they see as the manager’s excessive salary in that context.

“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,” argues Pike.

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.

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IMPACT say they will be again writing to the Public Accounts Committee which is investigating the engagement of the manager through Starline, a private sector management company.

The industrial action is being undertaken following a ballot that was supported by 90% of the members at the hospital.

Read: HSE West ordered to pay €70,000 to woman it discriminated against >

Read: Two Limerick hospitals account for 60pc of outpatients waiting over four years >

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Rónán Duffy

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