Following prolonged engagement and extensive lobbying the PNA welcomes the €9million package of measures approved by cabinet this evening.

In the context of considerable challenges in the recruitment and retention of nurses across mental health and intellectual disability services, today’s announcement is significant.

The McHugh report originally published in August 2021, recommended supports for student nurses with regards to their accommodation, uniforms, travel and subsistence, whilst recognising their contribution to the frontline workforce and the costs associated with achieving their clinical practice placements integral to the nursing degree programme.

For final year students the payment for their 36-week internship was initially agreed in 2002 as 80% of the first point of the staff nurse scale, this remained the case until the cuts of 2010. The PNA have since pursued the claim that this rate of pay be restored.

The current fourth year students will commence their 36-week internship shortly –today’s announcement that their salary is aligned to the recommendation of the McHugh report to reinstate their rate of pay to 80% of the first point of the staff nurse scale will provide assurance for this group.

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