Cyprus Mail

Doctors refuse to punch in time cards

State doctors say that clocking-in with other workers is 'humiliating'

By Andria Kades

DOCTORS union PASYKI is defying a health ministry order that requires them to start using cards time to monitor their clock-in and clock-out times as of July 1, leader Maro Kondou said.

The union’s board has called on all its members to not use it “as it is a form of blackmail and threat,” and they will resort to “dynamic measures,” Kondou told the Cyprus Mail on Friday.

“It is humiliating for doctors to stand in a cue with other workers,” she said.

“If a doctor has to clock in at 2:30 but is doing other work does he have to leave it half way and go back to it so he can use the card?”

Currently, she argues, doctors work more hours despite the cuts in their salary and are not paid overtime. “We have not even been invited to discuss this,” she said.

The only condition in which they can agree on using the card is if they start receiving overtime pay and public holiday pay as the current state of affairs leaves doctors working extra hours with reduced salaries, she said.

Furthermore, not all hospitals have the necessary equipment to use the cards, such as at Larnaca hospital, according to Kondou.

The Health ministry had no comment.

On the other hand, the state pharmacists union PASYKYFA has cancelled a planned strike for July 1 as Health minister Philippos Patsalis has agreed to their main demands.

Earlier this week, the chairman and vice chairman of the union had a meeting with Patsalis who assured them in writing that no one from the pharmaceutical services will lose their jobs with the reform of hospitals.

The union expressed support for the minister “in his difficult work for the successful autonomy of state hospitals and implementing the National Health Scheme.”

According to their statement, the position of General Pharmaceutical Manager has been added to the draft bill for hospitals’ autonomy, who will handle 20 per cent of the budget which is the amount allocated to medicines.

Another 15 positions will re-open which “will create the suitable conditions for smooth operations of the pharmaceutical services.”

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