Hadassah's Palestinian Medical Residents at Hadassah Still Unpaid

The 20 residents from the Palestinian Authority fear they may not get any of the money they are owed.

Ido Efrati
Ido Efrati
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While the regular Hadassah employees launched crippling sanctions against the hospital after receiving only half of their January pay, 20 medical residents from the Palestinian Authority have not been paid at all and don’t know whether they’ll get paid now that the hospital was granted a stay of proceedings.

As a rule, foreign medical residents, including those from the PA, are not considered regular staff members of any hospital and do not receive base salaries; they are only paid for the extra duty shifts they do in the emergency room and on the wards. On average they do seven to eight shifts a month, and are paid between 7,000-8,000 shekels ($2,000-$2,300).

While regular Hadassah employees get their wages paid on the first of the month, these residents only get paid on the 12th or 13th of the month. On February 11, the Jerusalem District Court granted the hospital a 90-day stay of proceedings, which protects it from creditors, and now the residents don’t know when they’ll get paid, if at all.

“We residents come to the hospital every morning, 30 days a month, 365 days a year,” said Dr. Osama Kumeisa, who is finishing his fourth year of a surgical residency of Hadassah. “On days we are on the duty shift roster we work from 4 P.M. to 11 A.M. the next morning.

“We haven’t gotten any of our January salary and it’s the 16th of February,” Kumeisa continued. “Meanwhile, no one has told us anything. We’ve gone through the department directors and to management through the doctors’ union and they said it’s being taken care of. We’re afraid the January salary may just be erased, since our payday came after the stay of proceedings, which freezes the hospital’s debts. We don’t know if, legally, we can even make any demands.”

Over the weekend Hadassah CEO Avigdor Kaplan issued a letter to the workers in which he said they would get the rest of their January salaries shortly, but it wasn’t clear whether that letter was relevant to those residents who hadn’t gotten paid at all.

Hadassah Medical Center, Ein Karem, before work sanctions began. Credit: Oliver Fittousi