On Tuesday, after 11 a.m., the fifth meeting of the representatives of the Ministry of Health and the Protest and Strike Committee of Healthcare Workers began. – We hope that we will start working on an agreement today. But I would not count on working out this agreement today, said the spokesman of the Ministry of Health, Wojciech Andrusiewicz. Protesters say they are “tired and disgusted with how these conversations take place.”
Previous interviews between medics and representatives of the Ministry of Health took place on September 21, 23, 28 and 30. All meetings take place at the “Dialog” Social Partnership Center in Warsaw.
The National Protest and Strike Committee for Healthcare Workers has eight demands. They include, among others increases and a real increase in the valuation of benefits, the introduction of sick leave after 15 years of professional work, as well as the adoption of the laws on laboratory medicine and the profession of a paramedic.
Vice-president of the Supreme Medical Council, Artur Drobniak, told journalists before entering the “Dialog” center that so far the ministry had not made any specific proposals regarding demands. – For sure we will also hear that we are the only party with which it is impossible to get along, because the health care situation is under control – he added.
– We are just tired and disgusted with how these conversations take place. (…) Today we have a very specific agenda. We are looking forward to a long meeting. We hope that this agenda will be adopted and implemented point by point. Finally, we count on the professionalism of the entire office of the Ministry of Health, its officials and the minister – said Drobniak.
Andrusiewicz: I would not count on working out this agreement today
The management of the Ministry of Health emphasizes that the implementation of the wage demands of the protesters is unsustainable in next year’s budget.
As spokesman for the ministry, Wojciech Andrusiewicz, said, the ministry “hopes that with the boundary conditions the other side will go towards a compromise”. – We present what we are able to agree to. We hope that we will start working on an agreement today. But I wouldn’t count on working out this agreement today. We will start working on it, he said.
Healthcare workers’ protest
On September 11, after a manifestation of health care workers in Warsaw, White Town 2.0 was established near the Chancellery of the Prime Minister, referring to the 2007 White Town of Nurses. After a break caused by an incident during the conference – self-mutilation of an elderly man who had died – the town reverted to its original form of protest. Among other things, thematic panels and lectures are held there.
Main photo source: PAP / Wojciech Olkuśnik