Call for waiving of registration fee for Portlaoise Hospital nurses and midwives

Call for waiving of registration fee for Portlaoise Hospital nurses and midwives

Local Labour representative, Eoin Barry has called for the registration fee for nurses and midwives to be waived for 2021.

Mr Barry said:

“Our local nurses in Portlaoise Hospital have been working so hard during this pandemic, and every day are playing their part at the frontline.

“Healthcare workers everywhere deserve our support, and there are things we can do to help them – by staying at home and following public health guidance, ensuring they get vaccinated as quickly as possible, and providing fasttrack citizenship for those who want it. Something that would make an immediate difference though is the registration fee.

“Nurses and midwives have been under an unprecedented amount of pressure since January 2020, from record overcrowding in our hospitals in the early parts of 2020, through to grappling with all Covid related challenges since March last year.

“Now as nurses and midwives work through what will be the most challenging period we have seen through this pandemic, they are receiving notices to pay a registration fee in order to be allowed to continue to work in our hospitals by February 28th.

“Nurses and midwives have been in contact with our party since late December about waiving the NMBI registration fee. After everything healthcare workers and front-line heroes have done throughout 2020, they now have to pay for the privilege of working in our hospitals in 2021. Surely it is not too much to ask that this fee be waived. “

“Nurses and midwives have given up so much during Covid. They gave up annual leave and gave up time with their families in order to provide childcare. Currently nurses on the frontline are putting themselves and their families at risk to deal with the rising consequences of Covid-19, while their staff rosters are being decimated.

“Nurses who are working in circumstances which they have never worked before are being put under pressure to pay a €100 fee to the NMBI by the end of February. There has also been glitches in the payment system, so nurses and midwives have been spending precious spare moments trying to get in touch with the NMBI to try pay their registration fee.

“Surely in the coming weeks the Government can waive this payment, for one year only, as an acknowledgement of their work. Labour have called on Minister Donnelly to examine this issue.

“The Government are quick to offer applause and kind words to our frontline heroes, but they now have an opportunity to recognise the difficult work they are doing and waive the registration fee. A few years ago there was cross party support to save Portlaoise Hospital, we know need a similar initiative to support the staff in our hospital. 

Eoin Barry Labour local area representative for Graiguecullen- Portarlington has called for waiving of registration fees for nurses and midwives. Credit: Alf Harvey