British Health Service Vaccination Center: waiting times at new high
Photo: Steve Parsons / dpa
Nurses at Britain's chronically underfunded NHS health service plan to step down before Christmas to fight for better pay.
The professional body Royal College of Nursing (RCN) called for strikes on Friday in England, Wales and Northern Ireland for December 15th and 20th.
This means an escalation of the conflict between the medical workers and the regional governments.
"Nurses are fed up with being taken advantage of, underpaid, and working under insecure staffing levels - and fed up with not being able to give patients the care they deserve," said the association's general secretary, Pat Cullen.
The association accuses politicians of not being ready for serious negotiations.
Only in Scotland could agreement be reached on negotiations.
Health in the UK is a matter for the four state governments.
The association calls for a salary increase of five percent above the inflation rate, which is currently more than eleven percent.
However, British Health Minister Steve Barclay argues that this cannot be financed given the tense situation.
The Conservative politician referred to additional billions in aid that the government is making available to the NHS.
The health service NHS (National Health Service) in Great Britain, unlike the health insurance companies in Germany, is not financed by contributions, but covers its expenses from a budget set by the government.
Waiting times for routine procedures in England reached a new high at the end of September.
The situation also deteriorated further in the emergency departments, for which data are already available from October.
Just under 70 percent of the patients were treated within four hours of admission during the period examined – the worst value since the statistics began.