Retiring HSE staff can be re-hired

Thousands of health service staff set to retire before the end of this month can be re-employed in the service after retirement, as no re-employment restrictions are being placed on them.

Around 3,700 health service staff are expected to have availed of early retirement by February 29th, in order to benefit from better pension terms, which will no longer be available after this date. However, there will be no contractual restrictions placed on them being re-hired at a later date.

Health Minister James Reilly, in a recent Dail reply, said no specific re-employment restrictions will apply to people retiring before the end of the 'grace period' for better pension terms, which expires on February 29.

A re-employment ban did apply to HSE staff who availed of the 2010 voluntary early retirement /voluntary redundancy scheme, the Minister said.

This meant that those taking early retirement under this scheme could not be re-employed in the public health sector or the wider public service or in a body wholly or mainly funded by public money.

The same re-hiring ban applied to those taking voluntary redundancy under the 2010 scheme, although they could be re-hired after a period of seven years had elapsed.

However, Dr Reilly said that as the current spate of retirements do not come under any specific voluntary redundancy/early retirement scheme, no specific re-employment restrictions will apply to persons retiring before January 29.

The Minister was replying to a query from Deputy Robert Troy of Fianna Fail.

Latest figures show that around 2,000 heralth service staff have either already retired or will retire between the start of this year and the end of February. In addition, around 1,700 staff retired just before the end of last year.

It is expected that around 1,500 nurses and 100 doctors will leave the health service under the current spate of retirements.

[Posted: Wed 08/02/2012]

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