Estonian healthcare sector signs collective agreement

Healthcare sector representatives signed a collective agreement on Tuesday, increasing sector wages retroactively from April 1.
Healthcare sector representatives signed a collective agreement on Tuesday, increasing sector wages retroactively from April 1. Source: (Postimees/Scanpix)

Representatives of Estonia's healthcare sector on Tuesday signed a collective agreement stipulating a wage hike retroactively from April 1.

In accordance with the agreement, the new minimum hourly wages, effective from April 1, are €10.53 for doctors, €6.03 for nurses and €3.70 for carers, the Estonian Medical Association said.

With the signing of the collective agreement, industrial peace in healthcare has been ensured and the strike planned to begin May 15 will be called off, said the leaders of Estonia's healthcare unions.

The agreement was signed by the Estonian Medical Association, the Estonian Union of Healthcare Professionals and the Estonian Nurses' Association on behalf of employees as well as the Estonian Hospital Association, the Estonian Ambulance Association and the Estonian Association of Family Doctors on behalf of employers.

Negotiations on the new collective agreement that began at the beginning of last year failed to produce a result, as medical workers refused to sign an agreement so long as the government had not agreed on measures to increase the overall financing of healthcare and created a sustainable model for doing so.

The government decided last week that in the future, an amount of money equaling the medical insurance portion of the social tax will be paid into the budget of the Health Insurance Fund from the state budget on behalf of non-working pensioners. The money will be used primarily to cut wait times for specialist appointments.

Editor: Aili Vahtla

Source: BNS

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