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Psychiatric Nurses (members of the Psychiatric Nurses Association, PNA) in Waterford have voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action, up to and including strike action.  Nurses voted 89% in favour of industrial action which will commence from next Tuesday, 20 th February.

PNA Industrial Relations Officer, Michael Hayes said

‘This  action to commence in Waterford mental health services is a direct  result of continuing instances of  overcrowding in the admission unit at the Department of Psychiatry,  University Hospital Waterford, where lack of facilities and ongoing staff shortages and vacancies within our nursing numbers are compromising both patient care and staff safety'.

‘Nurses cannot continue to provide services that rely on redeployment of staff, agency staff, overtime and sheer goodwill on an almost continuous basis. They cannot ensure a level of safety for clients and staff where there is consistent and unacceptable overcrowding.'

‘PNA has repeatedly brought to management's attention  the ongoing overcrowding, nursing shortages, failure to fill identified vacancies and the resulting health and safety ramifications within the Waterford mental health services.'

The industrial action to commence on Tuesday 20 th February will affect services in Department of Psychiatry, UHW ,  and residential units at Grangemore, St. Aidens and Ard na Deise.

Media Contact:   Michael Hayes 086-3568849, Derek Cunningham 086-2430535