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Doctors, nurses agree 1.5pc pay deals

The State Government has defused health sector wages claims as a potentially damaging election issue, after doctors and nurses agreed to 1.5 per cent annual pay rises.

The completion of the last of the Health Department’s wage negotiations will see almost 40,000 health workers pick up increases that fall within Treasurer Mike Nahan’s wages cap.

Late yesterday, the Government reached an in-principle agreement with the Australian Nursing Federation to pay almost 16,000 registered nurses a 1.5 per cent rise over two years.

It came within days of a similar pay rise which the Australian Medical Association secured for 4500 doctors for the next three years.

United Voice had earlier agreed to a 1.5 per cent pay rise for 2700 enrolled nurses, as had the Health Services Union for 16,000 allied health professionals.

Earlier this year, Dr Nahan capped public sector annual pay increases to 1.5 per cent, with the revised policy applying to all industrial agreements expiring on or after June 1.

He said at the time that the policy was in line with the inflation rate and would provide an estimated $825 million in savings.

AMA WA president Andrew Miller would not comment on details of the doctors’ deal but said an in-principle agreement had been reached, after negotiations in the context of the fiscal constraints facing the Government.

Commerce Minister Michael Mischin said last night the ANF agreement was effective immediately, and the doctors and enrolled nurses agreements were effective from last week.

Health Minister John Day said it was a good outcome for the Government and health workers.

Source: The West Australian online

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