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DHBs Try to Profit From the Generosity of Resident Doctors

Media Release

31 October 2016

DHBs Try to Profit From the Generosity of Resident Doctors

Members of NZRDA who gave up their right to strike to provide life preserving services at their employer’s request are being offered only $4.00 an hour for their services.

The NZRDA and DHBs agreed that resident doctors helping with LPS services would receive no loss of pay for working during the strike. However Capital and Coast DHB is refusing to pay their normal salary, instead offering $4.00 an hour.

“This DHB has declared its hand in no uncertain terms,” said Dr Deborah Powell, National Secretary of NZRDA. “They are only interested in saving money. These resident doctors gave up their right to strike at their employer’s request, to provide care for patients in need. In return, the DHB is only prepared to pay them a quarter of the minimum wage for their generosity.”

“Resident doctors are not driven to work for money”, says Dr Powell, “but there is a point at which the penny-pinching behaviour of the DHBs must be called to account.”

Resident doctors who hold themselves open to be called back to work outside of ordinary hours are paid $4.00 an hour in recognition of being available to work. “But this amount is always paid in addition to their normal salary,” says Dr Powell.

Meanwhile NZRDA has opened a public petition accessible through the NZRDA , which has reached over 8000 signatures.

“We have opened the petition to give members of the public the ability to support in a tangible way our campaign for safer working hours for doctors,” says Dr Deborah Powell.

Further information about the campaign and the petition can be found at

Resident Doctors

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.

© Scoop Media

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