Young Physicians Reject New Wage Agreement Skip to content

Young Physicians Reject New Wage Agreement

The Association of Young Physicians in Iceland encourages all physicians to reject a new wage agreement, which the Association of Physicians in Iceland and the negotiation committee of the Icelandic state signed on Friday.

“It is a horrible agreement and we urge all doctors to vote against it,” Ragnar Freyr Ingvarsson, chairman of the Association of Young Physicians in Iceland, told Morgunbladid. “We would rather earn nothing than accept this kind of charity.”

The new wage agreement includes a 4.14 percent increase in salary for all wage categories. For physicians who just graduated that means a monthly increase of ISK 12,000 (USD 156, EUR 98).

The pay raise is actually ISK 8,000 (USD 104, EUR 65) lower than what the state offered originally and young physicians are furious.

“This agreement is a blunder. We’re supposed to accept ISK 217,000 [USD 2,800, EUR 1,800 per month] after six years of studying in university. That can hardly be considered a high salary,” Ingvarsson said.

Ingvarsson said if physicians in Iceland accept this new agreement, newcomers to the profession may look for a job elsewhere. “Doctors are needed all over the world and Icelandic doctors have been sought after for a long time.”

Gunnar Ármannsson, chairman of the negotiation committee for the Association of Physicians in Iceland, confirms that his colleagues are generally dissatisfied with the new agreement, but still encourages them to accept it.

“We received a low percentage increase but considering the circumstances we thought it was right to finish this deal,” Ármannsson said. The agreement was signed after 17 hours of negotiation.

Physicians demanded a pay raise in percentage instead of a fixed monthly amount like the state had suggested. Physicians were granted their wish although the percentage point they agreed on in the end was lower than what they had originally hoped for.

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