While negotiators are trying their best to arrive at a resolution, the emergency planning cell is gearing up to put its best forward in the event of a strike by medical lab workers. The strike by 1200 lab staff might put many critical laboratory services in jeopardy, including emergency surgeries.
Dr Davies said," Services that would be affected include the provision of blood, all testing of samples such as blood, tissues and swabs for diagnosis in over 70 per cent of all hospital admissions. Some primary services and private hospitals are likely to be affected and the strike will mean the postponement of elective surgery at all DHBs given the potential impact on blood provision."
Medical Laboratory Workers Union national president Stewart Smith said," We are very hopeful that we can reach an agreement - we're not as far apart as they think we are. They've said before that we're 20 per cent apart but the reality is I'm on record as saying we only want 5 per cent per annum."