Fianna Fáil TD for Kildare-North, Frank O’Rourke, has called on the Minister for Health and Minister for Finance to work together and liaise with SIPTU reps to try avoid the upcoming 24 hour strike planned by health support staff this Thursday.

Deputy O’Rourke was commenting as 10,000 health support staff plan to go on strike across the country, including in Naas General Hospital, in protest of the Government’s failure to carry out a job evaluation scheme.

He explained, “At the nub of the issue is the Government’s commitment to carry out a job evaluation scheme for health care assistants, maternity care assistants, laboratory aides, and surgical instrument technicians as well as chefs, porters and household and catering employees.

“During negotiations on the last Public Service Stability Agreement the Government agreed to carry out job evaluations to ascertain where and how job roles had changed and if remuneration should be increased to match any changes.

“The Minister’s must work with SIPTU representatives to address the issues for the sake of health services in Naas. The hospital is already under immense pressure with high numbers waiting on trolleys and an Emergency Department which is overwhelmed. Health support staff are vital for the smooth running of our hospital services. The Government must not take them for granted”, concluded Deputy O’Rourke.