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Hospital Strike Continues for Sixth Consecutive Day

Posted July. 16, 2007 03:26,   


As the strike continued for the sixth consecutive day at the Yonsei Severance Hospital, its operating capacity dropped below 40 percent on July 15, and its patients are suffering growing inconveniences as a result.

According to the hospital, the hospital operated at only 45 percent of its daily capacity on July 13, 43 percent on the next day, and it decreased further to 39 percent on July 15.

An official at the hospital said, “Fortunately, on weekends, no operations are allowed except for emergency surgeries; thus no operations were carried out on the 14th and 15th.”

However, he said, “Given that the hospital’s surgery performance rate stood at 20 percent on Friday, July 13, which is a business day, the rate on July 16 when surgeries resume will be far below the usual 20 percent. Only two cancer operations were carried out on July 13.”

In addition, the hospital is refusing to take any more inpatients, which will further increase the inconvenience to patients.

Meanwhile, management and union representatives held working-level talks and sought to reach a compromise, but they failed to narrow down their huge differences on certain issues.

An official at the hospital said, “From 10 a.m., officials at the hospital and unionized workers held working-level talks and started to negotiate on certain issues. However, workers’ demands for higher wages, better treatment for dismissed workers, and changing the status of temporary workers to regular ones could not be compromised on due to the workers’ huge differences of position with the management.

Beforehand, the National Labor Relations Commission reportedly offered a mediation plan to both management and union, but it came to nothing as the union decided to pursue voluntary negotiations.