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Greek nurses go on strike over wage cuts, staff shortages

Nurses in Greek state hospitals launched a strike on Thursday as an act of protest against wage and personnel cuts, a union spokesman told the country's national broadcaster.

Athens, 16 May 2019 (dpa/MIA) – Nurses in Greek state hospitals launched a strike on Thursday as an act of protest against wage and personnel cuts, a union spokesman told the country’s national broadcaster.

Only emergency cases were being admitted for treatment, the spokesman said. Hundreds of nurses also took to the streets of Athens and other cities across the country.

Since Greece’s financial crisis erupted in 2010, budget issues prompted an estimated 18,000 doctors and thousands of nurses to emigrate, mostly to Britain, Germany and the Gulf states.

The union warned that budget cuts meant the health system could no longer function properly, with many patients having to buy their own medication.

Greece emerged from the third and final bailout in August and is currently starting to relax the austerity meansures it imposed as a condition for receiving the rescue package.

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