Prague, June 7 (CTK) – A Czech court has rejected a lawsuit in which the Czech Doctors’ Trade Union (LOK) claimed the fulfilment of a memorandum on doctors’ pay increase by the state, CTK found out in the database of verdicts.
LOK chairman Martin Engel called the court decision “an evasive manoeuvre” and said LOK will appeal it.
According to the memorandum from 2011, the pay of doctors in hospitals were to reach from 1.5 to three times the country’s average pay by January 1, 2013 at the latest.
The Health Ministry does not consider the memorandum legally binding.
The Prague 2 District Court did not discuss the lawsuit at all and rejected it citing formal shortcomings.
Engel, nevertheless, told CTK that LOK previously removed the shortcomings at the court’s request.
“We insist on being right. We will lodge an appeal with the Prague Municipal Court. We do not consider the rejection by the district court decisive. For us, the decisive thing is that we are right. We are embarking on the Russian roulette,” Engel said, adding that LOK is even ready to turn to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.
The average monthly pay of doctors in state-run hospitals was 62,735 crowns last year, including the base pay of 32,450 crowns.
If the memorandum had been implemented, the base pay would have ranged from 36,325 crowns for beginning doctors to 72,650 for experienced doctors last year.
The memorandum was signed by Engel and former health minister Leos Heger (TOP 09) in February 2011.
The incumbent minister, Svatopluk Nemecek (Social Democrats, CSSD), does not consider the document legally binding. He says it resulted from a former Heger-Engel agreement and it is the two who should have secured its implementation.
Nemecek does not expect LOK to succeed with its lawsuit, he told CTK some time ago.
The Health Ministry plans to raise the doctors’ pay by 10 percent next year.