You’ve opened the doors

Posted March 11, 2014

The pressure you, as part of the Keep Our Doctors campaign, have been putting on the government has been enormous.

As a result, there have been some significant developments in the past 24 hours.

DG Meeting

The campaign pressure has built to the point where the Health Minister convened a “negotiation” meeting with the Director-General of Health, on one side, and representatives from Together, ASMOF, AMA, AMAQ, and ASMOFQ on the other.

Disappointingly, the state government publicly ruled out the possibility of legislative change prior to the meeting and the Director General again confirmed the government’s position yesterday.

In our view, legislative change is key to achieving a fair outcome for doctors and patients and something the government must change their minds on in the very near future.

Without legislative change, the fundamental problem remains - contracts will still be subject to variation by the government without agreement by, or reference to, Senior Medical Officers.

Another meeting is scheduled with the government representatives on Thursday and we’ll keep you updated on how that meeting goes.

 

Breaking news: QIRC ruling

This morning, union representatives have been at the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission – and there’s been a great outcome.

Queensland Health will write to each Hospital and Health Service and inform them of doctors’ right to take representation with them to any meeting about the contracts. The HHS must in turn inform all doctors of these rights.

This outcome follows the revelation that some HHSs were saying that representation at contract discussions was not allowed.

At the QIRC hearing, Queensland Health also expressed their concern that “pro-forma emails” were being sent by doctors to HHSs saying that contract discussions would need to be delayed until union representatives were available. 

Queensland Health’s specific concern was that the lack of availability of union representatives might delay discussions. While it is a fundamental right that an SMO can be represented by the person of their choice - or represent themselves if they so choose – we have agreed to facilitate scheduling of discussions by writing to HHSs on the issue.

If you have any questions about representation at contract discussions – particularly if you’ve received a time for those discussions - contact your union office on 1800 177 244.

 

Top doctors resign

In the past 48 hours, two of the state’s leading doctors have quit over the contracts issue.

It’s never been so important that we keep the pressure on the state government to deliver a fair outcome for Queenslanders. We can’t afford to lose top doctors from the public health system.

Make sure you help keep the pressure on the government by getting along to a Keep Our Doctors protest meeting in your area. Click here for more information on when yours is coming up.

Thanks for your ongoing support. It’s been a huge 24 hours. We will keep you updated as talks with the government progress.