21 Mar 2013

French Polynesian doctor says new law needed to stop doctors strike

8:39 pm on 21 March 2013

A former president of the doctors union in French Polynesia says a solution to the strike in Tahiti is a new law to stop salary reductions in new permanent contracts.

More than a hundred doctors at several hospitals, including Tahiti's Taaone Hospital, have gone on strike in support of a female doctor who had her salary cut by about 22 US dollars a month, as a condition of gaining a permanent position at the hospital.

Dr Jean-Paul Theron, who now works for the agriculture ministry, says parliament should amend or introduce a new law.

"To change the statute of the public doctor in French Polynesia, to avoid the point of the rule which indicates that a new graduate, having passed the contest to become a permanent doctor, must be paid the same salary he had before, when he was a temporary doctor."

Dr Jean-Paul Theron says he expects the strike, which began on Wednesday, to be over by the end of next week.