Pharmacists urged back to work


The Irish Pharmacy Union this evening urged pharmacists to resume normal services immediately “in the interests of patient safety.”

In a statement this evening, the IPU said they were urging members to return to work “in order to prevent a recurrence of the chaotic scenes of yesterday and last week, and in light of commitments made by the Minister in recent statements.”

The union’s executive is holding an emergency meeting in Dublin this evening to discuss the ongoing dispute.

IPU president Liz Hoctor said some of the issues at stake had not been resolved and warned that further disruption to services was almost inevitable if they were not.

“The bottom line is that the cuts which the Minister has forced through will have a very real and detrimental impact on the quality of patient care which community pharmacists can provide,” she said.

“In this dispute I hope it was made clear to people that our ability to continue to provide high levels of service is threatened by the Minister’s actions. That is a key point for people to remember long into the future.”

“The executive believes that pharmacists should resume normal services as a matter of urgency and assist their patients who have borne the brunt of the total failure of the HSE contingency plans over the past 11 days," she added.

Ms. Hoctor also confirmed that, while there had been some contact between the Department and the IPU over recent days, no acceptable basis had yet been found for a meaningful engagement to address the issues in this dispute.