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Rebuilding ‘trust’ and ongoing contract talks to feature at IHCA conference

By David Lynch - 08th Oct 2021

Trust between healthcare workers and health management and the ongoing talks on a new consultant contract are expected to feature heavily at tomorrow’s annual IHCA conference.

Speaking on the eve of his Association’s online conference  IHCA President, Professor Alan Irvine warned  “unless we change health service management culture, do the hard work of re-establishing trust, and improve working relationships, it is difficult to see how the Department can ever deliver an effective and empathetic public health service for the Irish people.”

At the online conference tomorrow the IHCA President and Consultant Dermatologist, is expected to address members and highlight the “decade-long erosion of trust between hospital consultants and health service management” .

Prof Irvine will also call on health service management to “pay heed to and deliver on plans for devolved, localised decision-making as part of Sláintecare”.

With consultant contract talks ongoing, tomorrow’s conference is likely to hear of frustrations among medical specialists over the 2012 consultant contract. The IHCA has described the talks at being at a “pivotal moment”.

“The number of vacant consultant posts has increased by over 200 [since last year], with over 700 positions now vacant or not filled as needed,” said Prof Irvine.

“We simply haven’t made enough progress, and while I acknowledge that we have been through a tumultuous period that has strained us all, it is also mission critical that we now assess what we have learned and how best to apply these insights to improve service delivery for our patients.”

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