Judge stops industrial action that would affect 80 operations a day at Mater Dei

Judge Robert Mangion has described an industrial action that the MUMN gave to Decontamination Sterilizing Technicians (DSTs) as a danger to patients’ health and therefore ordered it not to take effect.

It was the Director General within the Office of the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health who asked the First Hall of the Civil Court to stop the union of midwives and nurses from taking industrial action at the Mater Hospital.

In addition to the DSTs, industrial action was also addressed to phlebotomists and dental surgery assistants members of the said union.

After hearing both the MUMN and senior officials at Mater Dei Hospital, Judge Mangion pointed out that the evidence showed that the action to the DSTs meant that the instruments would not be prepared before the operations.

He claimed that from the same evidence it emerged that from the hospital calculations 80 operations a day would be affected.

Judge Mangion said that although a union had a right to industrial action it could not endanger the lives and health of patients.

He concluded that if the DSTs were to follow through with the industrial action this would be a danger to patients.

That is why he accepted the request of the health authorities and stopped the action against the DSTs, although not those in respect of phlebotomists and dental surgery assistants.