Scientists on strike over ‘unsafe’ shifts at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust

Pinderfields Hospital
Pinderfields Hospital

Scientists are on strike in a dispute with hospital bosses over patient safety.

Biomedical staff at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust are on the fifth day of a week-long strike in protest at short-staffing and working hours.

They were on the picket line at Pinderfields Hospital today after the Unite union balloted more than 30 laboratory staff who say they are being made to work excessive hours.

Work carried out by the scientists includes blood tests for liver and kidney function which are used to make critical decisions about patient care.

Terry Cunliffe, Unite regional officer, said: “This is about the safety of patients.

“People have been working 12-hour shifts and they get tired like anybody else does. That’s when mistakes happen and we want to avoid that.”

Unite said its members voted unanimously in favour of the strike, which will run until midnight on Sunday.

The union claims it offered to suspend industrial to allow talks to be held, but that was refused by management.

Unite said it members were providing emergency during the strike.

Emma Godfrey, pathology group manager, at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “The Trust has been working with Unite in an attempt to resolve the issues and discussions continue. “Our number one priority is, as always, patient care and we have put in place a number of measures throughout the strike to ensure the laboratories continue to provide a service to all our patients.”