'Residents agreement is good for health system'

Steinitz welcomes announcement that residents, Treasury reach tentative agreement on strike; draft documents await approval.

Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz 311 R (photo credit: REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun)
Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz 311 R
(photo credit: REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun)
Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz Tuesday welcomed an announcement that discussions between medical residents and the Finance Ministry had produced positive results and a final draft agreement had been drawn up.
"Our people came to an agreement that is good for the public health system," the finance minister said during a ceremony in Ashdod. "Hopefully either today or tomorrow we will receive word that the medical system will start a new path that is good for both patients and doctors."
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Medical residents caused a stir last month when hundreds walked out of work in protest of poor conditions, and a lack of progress in the months-long dispute. The protesting residents returned to negotiations with the Treasury in lateNovember, insisting that a final agreement include specialist doctors that have supported the residents in their cause, and also sought better conditions.
The judge presiding over the hearings between the residents and the Treasury announced Monday a final draft agreement had been written and sent out to the nation's hospitals for approval.
Representatives of hospital staff will present the document to medical residents in the country's hospitals Tuesday. An end to the dispute rests upon medical staff approval of the draft document. Among the agreements, medical residents will receive added salary during their residencies, and specialist doctors will be compensated for rotating afternoon shifts. The Finance Ministry also agreed to an additional wage increase for medical specialists.
Retired justice Yithak Zamir, who has presided over the hearings after his appointment in November, oversaw as agreements were reached between the parties.