Walk toward doctors' strike - David Bachar - July 2011
Doctors and residents marching during a doctors' strike in July 2011. Photo by David Bachar
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The Mirsham medical residents organization appeared to have declared its support for the Israel Medical Association ahead of yesterday's court hearing and representatives of Mirsham and the IMA met over the weekend to discuss their positions after it emerged that the negotiations with the Finance Ministry had run into a dead end.

But yesterday during the court hearing, the two groups began trading accusations.

At the hearing, Mirsham, through its own legal counsel, filed a request to be party to the talks between the IMA and the treasury, arguing that the organization was promised this over the weekend by IMA chairman Dr. Leonid Eidelman.

The IMA claimed, however, that Mirsham had misunderstood Eidelman and that the association's intention was to include medical residents in the IMA's internal consultations only. Furthermore, the IMA said, only medical residents who were members of the IMA's central committee would be included in the internal talks, and not Mirsham activists.

The court has yet to make a decision on the Mirsham request.

Meanwhile, the IMA also blasted Mirsham's decision to take on its own legal counsel for the court hearing without coordinating the matter with the IMA first.

Mirsham argued that the IMA was trying to convince residents to give up the struggle, and was also spreading rumors that Mirsham wanted to break away from the IMA and split up the forces within the medical community.

The IMA rejected these charges, declaring it was "determined to continue the struggle to save the public health system."