Medical scientists cancel planned strike after Labour Court intervention

Medical scientists cancel planned strike after Labour Court intervention

The strikes were estimated by the HSE to impact around 14,000 patients each day, with outpatient and in-patient treatments suspended across all public hospitals causing significant disruption. Picture: Brendan Gleeson

Medical scientists have agreed to suspend planned industrial action which was due to take place tomorrow after accepting an invitation to the Labour Court for exploratory talks on the dispute.

The HSE and Department of Health have agreed to attend the Labour Court in an effort to resolve a pay dispute with medical scientists which led to strikes today and last week.

The Labour Court intervened in the dispute on Tuesday, the second day of industrial action around a long-standing pay dispute. The court invited both sides to begin talks, which are set for tomorrow.

A spokesman for the Medical Laboratory Scientists Association (MLSA) said: “As a result, MLSA has this evening issued notice to all of its 2,100 members to suspend further industrial action planned for tomorrow.” 

He said work will resume as normal across all hospital laboratories from Wednesday.

MLSA General Secretary Terry Casey said they plan to enter the Labour Court process in good faith and with a commitment to resolving the severe recruitment and retention issues in the laboratory sector.

Michael Lynnsky from Carrigaline and Amanda Mostyn from Shandon who are members of the MLSA Union and were on strike at University Hospital Limerick. Picture: Brendan Gleeson
Michael Lynnsky from Carrigaline and Amanda Mostyn from Shandon who are members of the MLSA Union and were on strike at University Hospital Limerick. Picture: Brendan Gleeson

“The MLSA’s executive committee met this afternoon and has agreed to accept the Labour Court’s invitation. We will remain focused on what is required to achieve a sustainable work structure for Medical Scientists, patients and the Irish health service,” he said.

The strikes were estimated by the HSE to impact on around 14,000 patients each day, with outpatient and in-patient treatments suspended across all public hospitals causing significant disruption.

Around 20% of medical scientists' roles are unfilled currently, with graduates turning their back on the public sector roles due to pay disparities with other staff working in laboratories.

More to follow...

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