Daily Israel Report

Hospital Staff Strike Outside Finance Minister's Home

Hadassah Medical Center controversy continues, as protestors claim the bailout process is stalling.
By Tova Dvorin
First Publish: 4/27/2014, 8:58 AM

Hadassah workers protest (file)
Hadassah workers protest (file)
Flash 90

A protest erupted outside the home of Finance Minister Yair Lapid Sunday morning, demanding a solution to the ongoing financial and administrative crisis at the Jerusalem medical center. 

About 100 people attended the protest, including doctors, nurses, administrative officials - and even a few patients, according to Channel 10 News.

The protestors picketed outside Lapid's home and blew whistles "to wake him from his coma [over the situation]." 

Protestors are frustrated over the crisis, which has stretched over a period of months as negotiations between the Finance Ministry and the Ministry of Health continue over how to bail out the hospital from dire financial straits. 

In February, a major strike at Hadassah Medical Center over poor working conditions drove several senior members of both Hadassah Ein Kerem and Hadassah Mount Scopus to quit, fed up over the hospital's inability to compensate for missing wages and frustrated over the tedious negotiations. 

The strike began a backlash against the Finance Ministry for allegedly stalling in negotiations to expand the hospital's budget.

The budget cuts have been hurting patients, according to staff who were reeling after a month on half-pay. As a result, the centers decided to close their doors, operating on the schedule normally reserved for Shabbat and holidays. 

The strike eventually ended with an interim agreement stipulating that the wages of Hadassah employees who earn less than 15 thousand shekels a month will not be cut. However, a permanent agreement has not yet been signed, frustrating workers and leading to concerns of another strike.

Demonstrators at Sunday's protest stated that they intend to continue their campaign for an end to the crisis later this week, after Holocaust Memorial Day.