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Doctors in Iceland on Strike Again

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Doctors in Iceland on Strike Again

Police bike

Photo: Geir Ólafsson.

Doctors working at healthcare centers in Reykjavík and surrounding communities, at healthcare institutions outside the capital area and at Landspítali National University Hospital’s research, women’s and children’s wards started striking at midnight and will not resume work until midnight tomorrow.

Svanhvít Jakobsdóttir, director of the Capital Area Healthcare Centers, told ruv.is that all scheduled appointments will be canceled today and tomorrow. “The afternoon shift will also be canceled. The only service available is for emergencies. The canceled appointments will be moved to the back of the line.”

Usually, each of the 120 GPs working at the capital’s healthcare centers tends to between 30 and 40 cases each day. Læknavaktin, the after hours healthcare center in Kópavogur, will remain open. Long queues have formed there during the past series of strike.

The strike is the result of a wage dispute with the Icelandic state. Doctors are asking for a 30 percent pay rise, while the state is only prepared to raise their salaries by 3 percent. Further strikes are scheduled.

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