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Nearly 100,000 registered nurses have left the country (labor unions)


A new wage law in the healthcare system should take into account registered nurses as raising salaries for this category through performance-based wages is one of the necessary measures to combat the migration of experienced employees in the public healthcare system, given that, according to statistic estimates, nearly 100,000 registered nurses have left to work abroad in the past seven years, the Health Solidarity Federation of Romania (FSSR) pointed out on Monday.

According to a press release of the healthcare unionists, information regarding the situation of registered nurses in the public healthcare system is taken from public databases of the National Statistics Institute (INS) and was the object of a research which showed that, when compared to 1990, the public healthcare system's number of registered nurses dropped by 30,000 (around 25 percent), namely from 125,484 registered nurses in 1990 to 95,484 in 2012. The most dramatic drop in the number of registered nurses took place between 2007 - 2012, namely 23,000, the public healthcare system losing around 17 percent of registered nurses.

'... in 25 years, the public sector [of healthcare] has lost around 40,000 employees (on the backdrop of an increase in number of patients). As such we observe that the public healthcare system records the gravest crisis in the healthcare sector. In the past 23 years the number of patients has gone up by 12 percent while the number of registered nurses has gone down by 25 percent. The situation indicates a 40 percent increase in the work tasks in this interval (higher if we take in to consideration the years in which the number of patients was higher than in 2012)', the FSSR release shows.

In the opinion of the unionists, a raise in the age of retirement of registered nurses from 60 years (59 years and 8 months currently) to 65 years is far from being considered a success, being in fact a 'festinate measure, meant to save a something from the disaster that struck this personnel category, created by the governments of the past seven years'.

The unionists pointed out that the workforce in the care service of the public healthcare system is meager (at least 25 percent less employees), composed of tired workers (due to overtime work permanent in nature), aged (due to remaining in activity after the normal retirement age), disappointed (by the level of wages), and ailing (due to the work conditions and occupational diseases).