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NZRDA members to provide cover during the strike

Media Release

11th October 2016

NZRDA members to provide cover during the strike

Under the Code of Good Faith for the Public Health Sector, District Health Boards (DHBs) may make a request of a union for the services of striking workers should they need to ensure patient safety. This process, entitled “life and limb preserving services”, has now been completed between the DHBs and New Zealand Resident Doctors’ Association (NZRDA) in respect of the upcoming strike of Resident Doctors scheduled for October 18 and 19.

A process to ensure sufficient doctors are available in the event of an emergency or unforeseen circumstance has been agreed between NZRDA and all 20 of the DHBs. In addition, NZRDA has provided registrars to work in Intensive Care Units, Paediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Surgery and in the event of cardiac arrest, in a number of DHBs during the period of the strike.

Despite claims by Auckland DHB of low NZRDA membership amongst resident doctors in their employ, this DHB requested (and was granted) more NZRDA members than any other DHB.

“In addition to our Senior Medical Officer colleagues who will be ensuring patient safety during the strike, the provision of NZRDA members should reassure the public that if they are seriously unwell they will be cared for,” says NZRDA National Secretary Dr Deborah Powell.

Strike action by resident doctors is scheduled to take place from 7am on Tuesday the 18th of October through to 7am on Thursday the 20th of October.

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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.

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