The Public Health Committee of the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) has agreed to ballot members on a proposed agreement to resolve a 20-year dispute over consultant grade posts in Public Health.
The Minister for Health announced that an agreement was reached with the IMO on a reformed public health model in Ireland which will be progressed on a phased basis and will include the establishment of the grade Consultant in Public Health Medicine to provide the strategic leadership for the reformed Public Health Model.
The agreement was reached after intensive negotiations between the Public Health Committee of the IMO and the Department of Health and the HSE.
The Committee has decided to put the proposals to a ballot of members with a recommendation that they be accepted.
The proposals would see the creation of 84 Consultant grade posts in Public Health.
Of these posts, 34 will be filled over the coming 12 months while a further 30 will be filled between June 2022 and June 2023.
The final 20 posts will be filled between June 2023 and December of that year.
The 20-year dispute is centred around the successive Government’s refusal to extend the grade of Consultant to suitably qualified Public Health Specialists.
The incoming Chairperson of the IMO Public Health Committee, Dr Anne Dee said that in terms of the development of public health in Ireland, it is “a landmark agreement which has the potential to transform public health in this country”.
“This agreement will bring Ireland into line with other jurisdictions such as New Zealand, Australia, UK and Canada in having the role of Consultant in Public Health Medicine,” she added.