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Source: New Zealand Unions Activists and Left Political Parties

Headline: NZRDA Issues Strike Notices to the 20 DHBs

Resident Doctors throughout New Zealand have voted to take strike action in support of their claims for safer rosters and safer hours through settlement of the MECA (Multi Employer Collective Employment Agreement).

The strike will be for a period of 48 hours commencing at 0700 hrs on Tuesday October 18 2016, finishing at 0700hrs on Thursday October 2016.

All 20 District Health Boards will be affected by the action, which will involve a complete withdrawal of labour by NZRDA members.

“It is extremely disappointing it has come to this,” says Dr Powell National Secretary of NZRDA, “however the DHB’s resistance to meaningfully improve current unsafe rostering practices has left us no choice. We have yet to see sufficient real change in the system after four years of engagement and 10 months of bargaining. We see no other way to secure safer rosters for our nation’s doctors and the patients we care for.”
Resident Doctors (RMOs or Resident Medical Officers) are registered medical practitioners, and range in experience from first year qualified doctors to those with more than 12 years’ experience. They primarily work in the public sector where they are employed by all 20 District Health Boards.

Resident doctors staff New Zealand’s public hospital system delivering 24/7 care to patients and also utilise this time to gain specialist qualifications as surgeons, physicians, paediatricians etc.

Resident Doctors are also employed in general practice as GP trainees; however these doctors are not involved in this dispute as they are not DHB employees.