Student radiographers last month. Siptu

Student radiographers will be offered three-month paid contract from 18 May

The students had been calling on Simon Harris to pay them for their work during the pandemic.

STUDENT RADIOGRAPHERS WORKING on the frontline during the Covid-19 pandemic will be offered a paid employment contract from 18 May, trade union Siptu has said. 

Last month, a group of 51 student radiographers represented by the union had called on Minister for Health Simon Harris to pay them for their work during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

These students will now be offered a three-month paid contract to work as radiography assistants starting from 18 May, with an annual salary of just over €28,000.

The students will be offered a similar contract as that offered to student nurses and midwives recently, according to Siptu’s sector organiser Kevin Figgis.

The fourth year radiography students from University College Dublin are currently on a seven-week placement for which they are not paid.

They complete their four-year course when they finish this placement, and many are hired as assistant radiographers in the healthcare system after this.

Siptu had been calling on approval for their pay, particularly as it said some were covering work for radiographers in self-isolation. 

Figgis said the contract is similar to that offered to nursing, midwifery and medical science students. 

“From the outset of our campaign, Siptu representatives argued that the essential work carried out by these students should be treated no less favourably than other student health professional categories,” he said.

“This agreement achieves that parity of esteem and recognises the hard work of these dedicated young health professionals serving our communities.” 

Figgis said these contracts would help to bridge the gap between students completing their training, graduating and becoming registered as radiographers.  

He said the students will be partly working with portable equipment to visit wards with patients who can’t be brought down to X-ray and will be working directly with radiographers. 

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