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Indefinite contracts reflect ‘serious’ recruitment issues

Contracts of indefinite duration (CIDs) for consultants are “not best employment practice”, but reflect serious recruitment problems in certain specialties, the HSE’s National Director of Human Resources has told the consultant applications advisory committee (CAAC).

In October, Ms Anne Marie Hoey informed CAAC Chairperson Prof Áine Carroll that approximately 100 consultants were employed on these contracts.

“While CIDs potentially impact on the employer’s ability to provide opportunities for doctors to apply to vacant consultant posts, a recent analysis of the number of consultant CIDs across the HSE shows it to be approx 100,” wrote Ms Hoey in correspondence seen by the Medical Independent (MI) following a Freedom of Information request.

“This is circa 3 per cent of employment contracts held by consultants and is due in part to the ongoing effort in managing non-permanent employment contracts.”

Last year, MI reported on concerns expressed by CAAC members about the number of applications for CIDs that were coming before the committee. The CAAC’s Chairperson wrote to Ms Hoey in February 2020 regarding the issue.

“From an employer and governance perspective, there are shared concerns as to how a CID is obtained given that the post does not go through a rigorous competitive process,” wrote Ms Hoey in her reply to the CAAC.

“As a result, other qualified candidates and senior trainees are not given the opportunity to apply for the post.”

Ms Hoey stated that she would bring the CAAC’s views “to the attention of HSE senior managers”.

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