ACCOMMODATION for nurses and shortage of nurses in the hospitals will be among a log of claims that the newly-declared executives of the PNG Nurses Association will pursue.
The association treasurer Damaris Penias and association president Carman Yakopa said this following the declaration of the new office bearers for the association on Friday.
Polling for the new office bearers took place more than four months which saw the election of the national as well as the branch executives throughout the country.
The results were all declared by the returning officer Paul Wartovo on Friday, witnessed by the association lawyer Herbert Wally, representatives from the Department of Personnel Management, Health Department and the Office of the Industrial Registrar.
Ms Penias, who is also a nurse manager at the Port Moresby General Hospital, said the association is run by subscription fees from members which has increased recently from one percent to two percent of the members’ salaries.
She said this is not much and has encouraged more nurses to join the association which is fighting for improvement of conditions for the nurses.
She said the first award, which the association had fought for has been implemented, although the nurses from rural areas dispute this and there is now a review underway.
Ms Penias said there was a dispute over the accommodation allowance in the first award which will be one of the key components of the revised award.
"We have a lot of activities to cover, one of which is the annual symposium,’’ she said. There are 8000 nurses nationwide, but just over 1000 are members of the association.
She said the association is aware that the nurses from the private hospitals are trying to use the nurses award to ask for better conditions, but that is yet to be seen.
Mr Yakopa said while the physical buildings of hospitals are improving, the issue with shortage of nurses remains a big problem because of many reasons.