Government persists with “Not Enough Money” for Nurses & Midwives
Millions of euros spent on Consultancies & Steward Health Care
MUMN to increase directives in Health Centres and in Gozo General Hospital but not in MDH
Ten days have passed from when MUMN had declared an industrial dispute on the nurses'/midwives' sectoral agreement. The Ministry for Health has made no extra effort to address the dispute and has not sent any counter proposals to address the industrial actions. It is clear that for the Ministry for Health, the patients, nurses and midwives are not a priority and is not prepared to address the humiliating counter proposals sent ten days ago to our members.
The Ministry for Health has still made no effort to present a sectorial agreement which will address the nurses’ shortage and persisted with the notion that the Government has “Not Enough Money” for the Nurses & Midwives.
Instead, our “humble” Government is resorting in threatening nurses & midwives who are following MUMN directives. Not only that, but the Government resorted to outsource surgical operations thus delivering a clear message that it is prepared to spend the taxpayers' money on private contractors, who have close ties to the Government, but is not prepared to offer a better financial package to the nurses & midwives.
This has angered the nurses & midwives even more since this has proven that the Government is capable to seek additional funds but then fails to seek additional funding to our sectoral agreement.
MUMN was also shocked what has been revealed in Parliament regarding the millions of euros being spent on ex-Labour officials on consultancy services while MUMN is continuously being informed that there is “not enough money” for nurses & midwives.
Other health professions, such as the Consultants, were allotted millions of euro for their sectorial agreement while nurses & midwives, who are the only two professions responsible of managing all hospitals (which hospitals have an inadequate bed supply for the demands of the population), are being repeatedly told that “they have to provide a better service” or " What is the tax payer going to get in return?”.
The last counter proposals send by the Ministry for Health demonstrated that the Government has no intention whatsoever to address the nurses' shortage in Malta by investing in young nurses and midwives but is planning to bring more nurses from India, Pakistan or even from Africa through private local contractors.
MUMN was also informed that the Government, on his own accord, cancelled operations being done on Sundays under the scheme of 'Sunday Initiatives' even when such operations had no directives on them and involved patients suffering with cancer. This sends a clear message that the Government had no qualms to cancel operations which operations involved oncology patients. Not only that but MDH is ordering nurses to work as porters so to bypass MUMN' s directive.
Although several of non-urgent operations were cancelled, both in Malta and Gozo, although numerous bloodletting appointments were cancelled, although nurses are not washing patients, the Government showed no compassion or empathy to address the nurses' shortage nor to demonstrate any appreciation to the service which nurses & midwives deliver on a daily basis to their patients. Health is not a priority to the Government.
This was also evident in the speech of the Prime Minister at the Freedom Day celebrations where he announced that university stipends related to the Economy sector will ONLY increase, ignoring completely the university stipends of the nurses & midwives displaying clearly that Dr. Abela has no interest to address the shortage of nurses & midwives in the country.
MUMN was shocked when it was revealed in Parliament that the Prime Minister was actually informed that the deal with Steward was fraudulent way back in 2021 but the still allowed millions of euros to be passed on to Steward. This demonstrates that the Prime Minister was not capable to take Steward to court to terminate the contract which caused the Health Sector to be drained from vital financial resources, much needed for the care of the patients, nurses & midwives.
With all the dirty tactics being used by the Ministry for Health, MUMN (with great responsibilities towards the patients in MDH) will not increase its the current directives at MDH but will have to introduce further new directives in all Health Centres and in Gozo General Hospital.
The New directives in the Health Centre:-
- Will stop all nurses to accompany doctors in all Health Centres’ clinics
- Will stop all vaccinations related to travellers. MUMN has purposely spared not to affect any vaccinations related to children and oncology patients.
- Nurses in Health Centres will also not be doing any clerical work which will include not answering any phone calls.
The New directive in Gozo General Hospital Outpatients:
- Nurses are not to assist in these following clinics----Dermatology clinic, Neuro clinic, Urology Clinic, DOP clinic, SOP clinic, Paediatrics clinic, Ophthalmic clinic, Cardio Clinic, ENT clinic, Rheumatology Clinic, Nephrology Clinic and Respiratory Clinics.
- Not to perform any Pre-ops excluding confirmed oncology operations and paediatrics operations.
Once again MUMN invites the Ministry for Health to send counter proposals to MUMN on all the union’s incentives for the good of the people of Malta and Gozo. Nurses & Midwives are the least paid professionals all health care professionals in the Health Sector.