Health staff should be compensated

FRASER Coast public hospital workers are so stressed over the Queensland Health payroll fiasco that they should be financially compensated.

That's the view of a furious employee fed up with the ongoing issues and feeling let down by the workers' unions.

“Everybody – the nurses, the doctors, the cleaners, the kitchen staff – is just so stressed out,” she said. “We're still being paid incorrectly nearly every pay cycle and the time it takes to call up and fix it over the phone is ridiculous.

“Just the other day I spent three hours on the phone.

“It's really taking a toll on people like me who live fortnight to fortnight with nothing to back them up.”

The hospital worker, who wished to remain anonymous, said staff morale was “shot to pieces”.

“It feels like there's nowhere to go. We've only got our unions but contacting them has been very difficult. It feels like there's been no action at all.”

She believed staff should be compensated not only for the money they spent after-hours on their personal phones fixing the pay bungles, but also for the stress that the ongoing payroll problems had caused.

“Why shouldn't we be compensated? This is our livelihood we're talking about here.”

However, it was not likely Queensland Health would provide compensation pay-outs to staff, a spokesperson said yesterday.

“We're not considering compensation arrangements outside the standard Work Cover provisions,” he said.

Earlier this week Health Minister Paul Lucas said the State Government would spend $209 million over three years to fix the payroll system, which was introduced in March this year.

“This $209 million is comprised of $107 million towards additional payroll staff who are required to deliver the fortnightly pay,” he said.

“We know the pay system is now operating much more accurately than it once was, but it remains labour intensive and inefficient.”

The State Government has ruled out legal action to pay for fixing Queensland Health's payroll problem.

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