Friday July 10, 2020

The nursing strike: How we got here

Do we have a serious recruitment and retention crisis in nursing? Are nurses badly underpaid? Here we examine the claims and counterclaims in the current spat

Susan Mitchell

Deputy Editor and Health Editor

13th January, 2019
Nurses striking in 2015. Are they justified in taking industrial action once more? Picture: RollingNews

One of the facts that has received remarkably little attention as nurses gear up for strike action is that there are proportionately more nurses working in Ireland than in virtually any other country in the EU.

In Ireland, we have 11.6 nurses per 1,000 population compared with an EU average of 8.4. While data is never perfect, these are figures produced by the OECD – an independent body with no axe to grind.

Given this backdrop, the contention...

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