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More than 2,000 to retire from health service by end of month

Enda Kenny has given a detailed breakdown of the numbers expected to leave, after fears were raised over the impact on services.

Image: Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland

MORE THAN 2,000 people are expected to retire from the health service by the end of this month, Enda Kenny has said.

The Taoiseach said 2,263 health workers had indicated they would step down before March. This month marks the deadline under which public sector workers can retire with a pension based on their salary before pay cuts.

Opposition figures have raised concerns about the impact the retirements could have on frontline services, after health minister James Reilly acknowledged yesterday that some elective operations could have to be postponed.

Kenny told the Dáil this afternoon that the period of the retirement deadline would be handled by “transition teams” and “managed in a proper fashion so that services are not diminished.”

The specifics of the teams are due to be presented to Cabinet by the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Brendan Howlin, on Tuesday.

The Taoiseach also gave figures for the number of retirements anticipated in other areas of the public service. He said roughly 2,000 workers were expected to leave the education service.

Some 1,008 staff have indicated they will retire from the civil service; 859 from the local authorities; 841 from the Defence Forces and 297 from the gardaí, Enda Kenny said.

More: ‘Transition teams’ set up to manage public sector’s pension exodus>

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Michael Freeman

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