State Doctors' Working Conditions Set for Reforms
State doctors are set to work afternoons and use an electronic card to clock in as of 2012 if Health Minister Stavros Malas' reforms are accepted by state employee trade union PASYDY and doctors' union PASYKI.
Doctors would work from 7.30am to 2.30pm plus one afternoon each, meaning that there will be a doctor on duty every afternoon, said Malas. In addition, there would be the same overtime pay in all state hospitals, a change from the system today in which Nicosia hospitals have better benefits for doctors.
Agathoklis Christofides said that while PASYKI welcomes the opportunity to reform state health service operations, at the same time, doctors already have too much to do without having to fill out more paperwork and be restricted by electronic cards to clock in and out. But he welcomed the new schedule and proposal to pay on-call doctors a flat rate. PASYKI would likely agree to a fee of 500 euros per day, he said, adding that the current rate is around 1000 euros per day, in comments to Sigma TV.
Proposals for reform came on the heels of investigations into allegations state doctors were fraudulently claiming overtime and taking bribes to give preferential treatment to patients who need operations. Malas said that any patient who comes across a state doctor who wants a bribe should inform the Health Ministry which would give the information to the police.
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