MEDICAL scientists at University Hospital Limerick are continuing their strike action this week in a dispute over pay and unfilled posts.
Members of the Medical Laboratory Scientists Association (MLSA) picketed outside the hospital as they look for resolution on longstanding issues.
The strike action has led to disruption in services at hospitals across the country as the scientists are central to analyzing patient's test results.
The MLSA said it has made every effort to avoid regrettable disruption to patients and fellow healthcare workers but has been left with no alternative
A scientist at UHL said: "The key thing is we are doing this for the future of our profession, if we don't address these longstanding issues now then we, the service and patients will pay for it down the line.
"Our main concerns are the pay anomaly as well as recruitment and retention. People are doing the same work in the same building and not getting the same level of pay.
"20% of posts are unfilled at the moment because we cannot keep our graduates. There is no career progression and unless we have that clear then we won't have anyone working in this profession."
The scientists stressed that they do not want to strike and are conscious of the effect it has on patients, but they feel they have no choice.
A spokesperson for the UL Hospitals Group said they are engaging with the MLSA to ensure that arrangements are in place to provide a curtailed range of services.
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