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Striking junior doctors set to return

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 19/10/2016

The union representing junior doctors is waiting until their 48-hour strike ends before deciding the next step in the campaign for changes to work rosters.

About 3000 members of the New Zealand Resident Doctors' Association are set to end their industrial action at 7am on Thursday.

Advocate Melissa Dobbyn says that, from the association's perspective, the strike has gone smoothly and according to plan.

She says a decision on what happens next would be made after doctors return to work.

Further talks with the district health boards have not been arranged at this stage.

Junior doctors say they have to work 12 consecutive days, with some shifts 16 hours long, which leaves them overtired and is unsafe for patients.

The DHBs say they are willing to give the doctors two days off on week days, but the doctors want to be paid for them, which is effectively a pay rise.

Before the strike the DHBs said they had contingency plans in place, including having senior doctors and non-unionised staff filling in, and rescheduling some non-urgent appointments and surgery.

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