Polish doctors renew hunger strike over pay
PR dla Zagranicy
Polish doctors on Wednesday announced they were renewing a hunger strike over pay, saying that talks with Prime Minister Beata Szydło had failed to produce an agreement.
Resident doctors during a press conference in Warsaw on Oct. 10. Photo: PAP/Tomasz Gzell
A group of around 20 resident doctors have occupied the foyer of a major paediatric hospital in Warsaw for nine days.
As well as pay hikes, they are demanding increased funding for public health care, better working conditions, less red tape and shorter waiting lists.
They suspended their protest during talks with Szydło on Wednesday, a meeting that was also attended by Health Minister Konstanty Radziwiłł.
"The talks with Prime Minister Beata Szydło have not produced the expected results," said Filip Płużański from the OZZL medical practitioners' union.
The resident doctors say that before he was appointed health minister, Radziwiłł, from the conservative Law and Justice party, promised them double the national average monthly wage, which is PLN 4,100 gross, and triple for specialist doctors.
But Daniel Łuszczewski, a representative of the doctors on strike, said resident doctors earn between PLN 3,000 and 3,500 a month before tax.
According to Łuszczewski, a pay raise is needed to stop doctors from leaving the country for more profitable work abroad.