The Department of Health said the HSE had sought that experienced and qualified staff who currently supported undergraduate training for students in Years 1-3 of their courses be released for redeployment as part of the Covid-19 response. File photograph: Getty

Move aimed at freeing up experienced staff for frontline duties is to be reviewed in February

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar: ‘The Cabinet signed off on temporary appointment of Robert Watt as interim secretary general. He is there on his existing salary.’ Photograph: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos

New secretary general of Department of Health will be highest paid civil servant

Leo Varadkar: Covid pandemic has changed mindsets about his nature of remote work. Stock image: PA

Tánaiste says Covid-19 pandemic has greatly accelerated change in mindsets

Siptu general secretary Joe Cunningham: ‘The cost of borrowing is so low that it almost pays you to borrow in the current environment’

Siptu boss warns of economic challenge from Brexit, climate change and automation and AI

Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise Leo Varadkar said the aim is for ‘remote, blended and flexible working arrangements’  to be a much bigger part of life after Covid.’ Photograph: Getty

Government to also introduce new measures on right of workers to disconnect from job

The report says 94% of people surveyed would like to work remotely after the crisis. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

New survey also claims post-pandemic remote working could lead to country losing jobs

Intreo social welfare office. File photo. Photograph: Eric Luke

Union urges all public and private sector employers to facilitate working from home

Covid Emergency Department at St. Vincent’s University Hospital, Dublin. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

HSE forecasts more than 2,000 coronavirus patients will require hospitalisation by next Monday

Former Debenhams workers have overwhelmingly rejected a package of supports proposed by the chairman of the Labour Court in response to the liquidation of the retailers’s Irish operation last year. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times.

Workers overwhelmingly reject package of supports suggested by Labour Court chair

A supermarket worker wipes shelves with disinfectant wipes. File photograph: Tom Honan

Mandate union seeks clarity from Minister on prioritisation of shop workers

Fórsa said it believed staff and service-users were “being unnecessarily exposed to potentially virus-spreading interactions in workplaces and on public transport, and that this will likely impede the national effort to contain the virus”. Photograph: iStock

Fórsa says managers are asking workers to travel to jobs that could be done remotely

The HSE has introduced new arrangements for healthcare staff with childcare issues. Photograph:  Lynne Cameron/PA Wire

New arrangements will see such workers given duties outside of normal role, says HSE

Ambulances outside the  Emergency Department at St Vincent’s University Hospital in Dublin. Photograph: Alan Betson

Hospital system under severe pressure as patients in Donegal treated in ambulances

File photo. Photograph: Getty

Plan for ‘difficult decisions’ notes surge capacity likely to impact other health services

Social distancing sign. The 14-day incidence rate per 100,000 population is 1291.2 nationally. Photograph: Mike Egerton/PA Wire

1,452 people with Covid-19 in hospital on Sunday, with 125 in intensive care units

Covid Emergency Department at St. Vincent’s University Hospital, Dublin. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

HSE head Paul Reid says health service is under ‘increasing strain’ amid current surge

ASTI general secretary Kieran Christie. The union is to urge members to reject the new public pay deal.  File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Union leader says it is ‘scandalous’ pay inequality would persist despite past 10 months

The Bon Secours Health System said it would take part in the new accord that will see up to 30 per cent of capacity given over to the HSE

HSE to be allocated up to 30% of capacity in private hospitals during current surge

The Department of Health on Dublin’s Baggot Street. File photograph: Bryan James Brophy/The Irish Times

New pay rate of €292,000 set for vacant job to be filled by open competition

Nurses have said new expanded restrictions need to be introduced on the number of people passing through hospitals each day. File photograph: The Irish Times

Siptu says staff shortages now ‘everywhere’ in health service due to Covid-19

The Blackrock Clinic in Dublin is to allocate part of its existing capacity to the HSE. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Blackrock Clinic, Galway Clinic and Hermitage Clinic to sign up to new agreement

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly will bring proposals on the issue of public work taking place in private hospitals to Wednesday’s Cabinet meeting. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Government draft agreement sent to almost all private hospitals bar Beacon in Dublin

The sector with the highest number of people receiving the pandemic unemployment payment was accommodation and food services

About 335,600 people will receive the benefit this week

 Informed sources have suggested that 15%  of private hospitals’ capacity could be taken over if Covid levels reached a certain threshold, while this could rise to 30%  if the position deteriorated further. Photograph: Getty Images

Private hospitals say talks on new deal are at an advanced stage

Hospitals in Galway are to defer all but the very urgent and time-critical inpatient and day surgery.  Photograph: Getty Images

Hospitals across State to cancel outpatient clinics and defer non-urgent procedures

Decision to defer industrial action ‘based purely on ethical considerations and our commitment to do the right thing at a time of grave crisis,’ said IMO Public Health Committee chairwoman. File photograph: Andrew Lichtenstein/EPA

IMO says public health specialists will review the position at the end of January

Taoiseach Micheál Martin told the Dáil earlier this month that any exploitation of student nurses would not be tolerated. Photograph: Getty images

Initial review of allowances paid to student nurses to be finalised by end of the year

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly: In mid-October, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) went public after unsuccessful behind-the-scenes talks with the Department of Health.  Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Letter on August 24th outlined issue of unpaid placements in hospitals during pandemic

An expert review body has recommended a pay increase of 3.28 per cent for nurses in management grades. Photograph: Getty Images

Increase would restore pay differential following rises for other grades after 2019 strike

Elizabeth Canavan, assistant secretary general at the Deptartment of the Taoiseach. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw/ The Irish Times/ File

People asked to re-think plans for Christmas due to ‘alarming scale of growth’ in infections

Phil Ní Sheaghdha, the INMO general secretary, said student nurses and midwives ‘are doing incredible work on the frontlines during this pandemic’ and have overwhelming public support.

Union says deatils of final proposals will determine response to Government initiative

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) has maintained that there has been a spike in the number of patients, deemed to require admission, who have been waiting for beds in hospitals over recent days. Photograph: iStock

INMO says there has been spike in numbers of patients on trolleys in recent days

The 27-point incremental scale for teachers runs from €38,000 a year when they begin their career to €71,000, excluding additional allowances. Photograph: iStock

Report expects public servants’ pay to rise by 3.5% a year

Minister for Public Expenditure Michael McGrath said the agreement provided for “affordable pay adjustments weighted toward those on lower incomes”. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

INTO and Fórsa to recommend members accept new agreement in ballots

The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland  annual retention fee for nurses is €100. Photograph: Regis Duvignau/ Reuters

Military officers say they were ‘effectively ostracised’ from public pay talks process

 Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys at Leinster House, Kildare Street, Dublin. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Minister welcomes fall in claimants as a result of exiting Level 5 restrictions

Dutch authorities have forbidden the commercial export of cannabis oils but will allow the filling of individual prescriptions from EU states. Photograph: iStock

Delivery service established in April due to Covid-19 to be made permanent

The Government is  under pressure over demands by trade unions and the Opposition  to pay student nurses in hospitals during the Covid-19 pandemic. Photograph: iStock

Moves would be aimed at restoring differentials in place before strike settlement

Siptu deputy general secretary John King welcomed the pay-deal proposals

Fórsa, Siptu say measures were best that could be achieved, AGSI says it was not included in negotiating proposals

The Mylan plant in Baldoyle, Co Dublin, which recently merged with Upjohn to become Viatris. Photograph: Dean Ruxton/The Irish Times.

Viatris generic medicines facility in Baldoyle due to shut down over next two years

There were disputes involving gardaí and teachers in 2016 and nurses in 2019. File photograph: Cyril Byrne

New review of additional working hours to be put in place, going back on previous stance

Measures introduced  under the Haddington Road agreement in 2013  will be examined. Stock photograph: Getty

Agreement, if ratified, would see pay increase for public servants in each of next two years

Siptu welcomed the breakthrough but said the  issue of parity of treatment with colleagues in other State-funded organisations hadn’t gone away.  File photograph: Cate McCurry/PA Wire

Staff in about 250 ‘Section 39’ agencies are to benefit from breakthrough in talks

The HSE said the PPE markets were “volatile, complex and uncertain”. It said additional and secondary supply lines had to be opened at pace. Photograph: Alan Betson

HSE said PPE markets extremely volatile and Ireland was ahead in securing key supplies

The Minister told the HSE he wanted it to carry out a ‘thorough audit’ of its systems and controls concerning sourcing, management and usage of personal protective equipment. File photograph: The Irish Times

Minister’s order follows Government concerns that official rules not being adhered to

The Oireachtas health committee was told that no screening programme would pick up all potential cancer cases and none were designed to do so. Photograph: iStock

Cancer screening programme facing reduced capacity due to Covid-19, committee hears

Margaret Keenan (90) is lauded by staff as she returns to her ward after becoming the first person in the UK to receive the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine at University Hospital Coventry. Photograph: PA

Trade union calls for retail workers to be given the highest level of access possible

Retail and distribution workers have started a campaign for a new deal to tackle low pay and insecure work. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times.

Campaign by retail and distribution workers says there can be no return to ‘old, failed model’

Senator Alice Mary Higgins. Photograph: Tom Honan

Senators introduce Bill for moratorium on deportations until Covid-19 pandemic ends

Many student nurses had to give up part-time positions as healthcare assistants to avoid the risk of cross-infection. Photograph: Paul Burns/Getty Images

Department confirms 31 students got Covid-19 since March amid controversy over pay

Trade union leaders have questioned whether a new public service agreement on pay and other issues can now be reached

Unions are angry that proposals drawn up by Government were shared with staff associations outside Ictu

European Medicines Agency may approve a second vaccine, from Moderna, at a further meeting on January 12th, after which distribution would also begin in Ireland. Photograph: BioNTech SE 2020/PA Wire

European Medicines Agency to complete review of Pfizer vaccine by December 29th

Patricia King, general secretary of Ictu. Photograph: Alan Betson

Union sources indicate seven-day rostering, extended days or outsourcing not acceptable

Children not considered in urgent need of an MRI under general anaesthesia at Crumlin Hospital can wait up to 7 years. Photograph: iStock

Minister for Health says wait is so long at Crumlin Hospital there is effectively no service

The HSE report for the Government said there had been interest in principle from all bar one private hospital on its “safety net” proposals. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

Health authority had sought to take over up to 40% of beds for up to two years

The Taoiseach has told the Dáil that  ultra-low temperature storage freezers for the Covid-19 vaccine  have arrived into the country and will be commissioned by the middle of next week.

Securing vaccines will cost State €117.6m, says Minister for Health

Public health specialists have been campaigning for some time for public health to become a consultant-led service. File photograph: Getty Images/iStock

Analysis: Public health specialists to strike for three days in January

Heather Humphreys: ‘This week’s pandemic unemployment payment figures are showing a steadying off of new claims’. Photograph: Dara MacDónaill

Numbers claiming the benefit falls by 654, with 351,400 people receiving the payment

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly said it was disappointing that a strike could happen during a pandemic

IMO claims ‘no meaningful engagement’ with Department of Health for last five months

Medical specialists appointed since 2012 can still earn €50,000 a year less than longer serving colleagues. Photograph: Alan Betson

Pay cut in 2012 for new hospital consultants blamed for current staff shortages

The HSE said last month there had been a net increase of more than 150 consultants over the past year. File photograph: Getty

Over 600,000 people awaiting outpatient appointment, according to consultant group

The Department of Health proposed to the Department of Public Expenditure that about 80 consultant posts in public health medicine be established and that these positions could be advertised early next year. File photograph: Getty

Doctors to decide on Monday regarding nature and timing of planned industrial action

The doctors voted by 94 per cent in favour of industrial action. File photograph: iStock

Nature and timing of any industrial action to be decided on Monday

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has said he is committed to the establishment of a consultant-led public health model.  Photograph Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

Specialists who play key role in dealing with pandemic are seeking consultant contracts

Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins

Cabinet expected to approve easing of Covid curbs as Level 5 cost hits €1.5bn

 Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly said the State was currently facing significant challenges in the recruitment and retention of health and social care professionals. File photograph: Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

PNA conference also hears of new strategic unit to define health service workforce needs

Department of Public Expenditure has  tabled initial draft proposals on reforms and modernisation of public service

Initial talks also held to try introduce new dispute resolution measures

Unions have pointed out that   Section 39 personnel have not seen pay restoration, unlike direct State employees.

Dispute centres over pay restoration for staff at Section 39 organisation

The Central Mental Hospital in Dundrum, Co Dublin. File photograph: Frank Miller/The Irish Times.

Union says 200 additional staff needed to open new facility at Portrane in Dublin

Graffiti on a Debenhams store on Henry Street, Dublin. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collin

Minister says Duffy Cahill report dealt with assets and separation of assets

 Passport service staff who have been redeployed to work in the Covid-19 consular crisis centre. The Government is likely to seek that  flexibilities, such as redeployment provisions introduced as emergency measures during the Covid-19 crisis, should become permanent as part of new modernisation and productivity arrangements. Photograph: Alan Betson

Unions want rolling back of requirement for staff to work additional unpaid hours

A one-off bus and rail timetable to run services late into the night and the early hours of the morning could be drawn up to facilitate the public to do their Christmas shopping over a longer-span of the day, transport workers have told the Government. Photograph: iStock

NBRU tells Minister a once-off timetable could be introduced for Christmas

 Leo Varadkar: he  said he recognised the Government’s decision to further  suspend redundancy provisions would be “really disappointing” for some staff who wanted to take redundancy before the end of the year. Photograph: Julien Behal

Ministers believe hundreds of businesses could have failed if the measure was not put in place

Minister for Public Expenditure Michael McGrath briefed the Cabinet  on the preliminary talks on a new public service pay accord. Photograph: Collins

Government and Public Service Unions to begin negotiations as existing agreement expires next month

The Department of Social Protection said the sector with the highest number of people in receipt of the pandemic unemployment payment this week was accommodation and food service activities with 102,777 claiming the payment.  Photograph: Getty Images

Over €4.3bn so far paid out under scheme

Fórsa general secretary Kevin Callinan said any successor to the current public service pay deal would have to be realistic in the context of an extremely challenging economic and fiscal situation. File photograph: Laura Hutton/The Irish Times

Union says rolling back additional unpaid working hours will be essential part of any new accord

Michael D. Higgins: ‘out of such a crisis we are presented with perhaps a once-in-a-generation opportunity to do things better’. File photograph: Collins

More activist State is needed to meet challenges, Michael D Higgins tells trade union conference

 Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan: “We are seeing a number of things which concern us. There are examples of small numbers of people congregating for social purposes and simply ignoring the important public health messages. They are putting our collective progress at risk.” Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins Dublin

Nphet 'media strategy' is criticised, as coronavirus-related deaths pass 2,000

Fr Sean Healy: Ireland ‘faces several crises ranging from pandemic to pollution to poverty’. Photograph: Alan Betson

Unions say they have no interest in centralised pay bargaining system

Labour Party leader Alan Kelly: said the current law was unacceptable, unenforceable and wrong. Photograph: Alan Betson

Alan Kelly cites ‘ludicrous’ law requiring employer to inspect employees’ homes

Alan Kelly: As a result of the pandemic, the number of people working from home more than trebled to 700,000. Stock image: PA

Varadkar says there is need to ensure costs of this form of work are carried fairly

The Government is to reinstate annual leave for healthcare staff who had to use their holidays to mind children when schools and crèches were closed earlier this year due to Covid-19 restrictions. File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times.

Days must have been taken as direct consequence of closures due to public health advice

Medical Scientists voted to take industrial action if early progress was not made on a long-standing pay dispute. Photograph: Alan Betson

Public health specialists also balloting for strike action over pay issues

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly. He said he wanted to see “implementation of integrated structural reforms to modernise and future-proof our health service”.  Photograph Nick Bradshaw

Minister says additional €3.5bn should provide 2,100 beds and 16,000 extra staff

Public health specialists, who have played a key role in dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, have started balloting for strike action over pay. Image: iStock.

Department appears to signal unease at contract upgrades for public health specialists

Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys is seen at Leinster House, Kildare Street, Dublin, last week. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Minister says 37,000 recipients will see higher payments due to changes in scheme

Public health doctors are concerned Government proposals may not see all existing public health specialists automatically upgraded to consultant positions. Photograph: iStock

Doctors are seeking consultant contracts as part of new model of public health medicine

A member of the Irish Army Ranger Wing in Goz Beida in eastern Chad: The exchequer cost of Ireland’s financial contribution to international operations will rise from 2021 with the introduction of the European Peace Facility. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Brexit harbours ‘unforeseen ramifications’ for military spending, department warns

Fórsa’s head of health Éamonn Donnelly said the HSE’s approach to the problem was ‘casual’. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Fórsa blames derogation policy and calls for increased pressure on HSE ‘to take action’

Dublin Bus, Bus Éireann and Irish Rail had made substantial losses during the period 2009-2013, due to the loss in public service obligation funding over this period, coupled with the loss of fare revenue. File photograph: Aidan Crawley

Review finds bus and rail providers would not be able to absorb cuts to €314m subvention payments

Connemara in Co Galway, one of  seven Gaeltacht regions in the State. Photograph: iStock

Preparations for Brexit hit by Covid-19

Review warns providing free GP care not as simple as State taking over private fee costs

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar issued a statement in which he rejected Village magazine’s claims that he may have broken the law. Photograph: Julien Behal/PA Wire

FG figures rally to leader’s defence despite Government unease over controversy

Former NAGP president Dr Maitiú O Tuathail. Photograph: Conor Healy/Picture It Photography

Ó Tuathail was elected president of National Association of General Practitioners at the age of 29

The Green Party has  called on the Tánaiste to give a full and detailed account to the Dáil on the controversy and to   allow  time for questioning. Photograph: Getty

Tánaiste rejects article allegations that he acted unlawfully in sharing draft GP contract

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said in a statement  that he provided a draft copy of the new GP agreement to the then president of the NAGP  as he hoped to use his influence to encourage all GPs to accept it. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

In 2019 the government was negotiating a new deal with IMO that was offered to all GPs

A statement on behalf of Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said  the decision to send a copy of the draft  agreement was ‘honouring a political commitment previously made by the Government.’ Photograph: PA

Tánaiste says sharing draft pay deal with IMO with NAGP in 2019 was ‘not best practice’

CEO of the IMO Susan Clyne said she believed a strike ballot will be held in coming weeks. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

National meeting of public health specialists to take place on Monday

HSE chief executive Paul Reid said the authority had become ‘too much of an administrative system’. Photograph: Leon Farrell/ Photocall Ireland

HSE chief says Government trust in the health authority has been strengthened

 Minister for Public Expenditure  Michael McGrath says talks on a new deal were taking place ‘against the most difficult economic backdrop imaginable’. Photograph: Collins Photos

Minister warns unemployment levels likely to worsen due to Covid-19 restrictions

More articles