Clerical staff in South Island hospitals have staged a one-hour strike to protest at being paid less than workers doing the same jobs in North Island hospitals.
The strike began at 3.30pm on Friday and involved more than 800 administration and clerical staff who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA).
Warwick Jones from the PSA says the bottom pay rate for clerical staff in the South Island is almost $3000 less for than staff in the north.
Mr Jones says more strikes will follow if steps to address the pay gap are not taken.
A spokesperson for the six District Health Boards affected by the strike says contingency plans were in place to ensure patient safety.