The cooperation agreement between the education ministry and the University of Cyprus’ medical school has been put on hold for a week to give time to state doctors’ unions to submit their proposals, the ministry said on Wednesday.
On Monday medical staff of the Makarios hospital in Nicosia, members of state doctors’ union Pasyki and of the doctor’s branch of the civil servants’ union Pasydy, went on a three-hour work stoppage to protest against the presence of the dean of the UCy’s medical school Zacharias Zachariou who went to assume duties at the children’s surgery clinic, as per the cooperation agreement.
The agreement, which concerns the training of medical students of the university in state hospitals, provides that each hospital department will have two heads – the existing manager and a university doctor – while the latter will also have under his or her supervision a number of medical staff of the department.
Both unions are against the cooperation agreement as they said they were not asked their opinion on the matter and had requested for the agreement to be frozen so that they could submit their proposals.
Following the work stoppage, representatives of Pasyki and Pasydy had a meeting with the medical school and Health Minister Giorgos Pamboridis to discuss their grievances.
“It was discussed at the meeting that the agreement would be frozen for a week so that the unions could submit their proposals,” a health ministry spokesperson told the Cyprus Mail. Pasyki and Pasydy, that questioned the validity of the agreement as they said it was ratified through a cabinet decision and not by the parliament, are to present their ideas on Friday.
Unions had said that they do not object to having medical students training in state hospitals but that they wanted to discuss the terms concerning the presence of university doctors in hospitals.
Pasydy’s rep had raised an issue of state doctors being unfavourably treated due to this agreement and that there was also a huge difference in salaries as university doctors’ annual income will be more than three times that of state doctors.