Iranian Nurses Forced Into Overtime Work For 40 Cents Per Hour

Source: Iran International

Nurses dozing off at work

Iranian nurses are forced into mandatory overtime for payments less than 40 cents per hour to make up for the shortage of healthcare practitioners.

The Iranian Labor News Agency (ILNA) on Friday cited a nurse as saying that due to lack of manpower, nurses are asked to work overtime, sometimes up to 150 or 170 hours per month in addition to their own minimum standard working hours required by law.

According to the country’s laws, a nurse has to work 150 hours per month to get paid a full salary, which is about 100 to 120 million rials, about $200 to $240, the nurse added.

Noting that overtime should not be mandatory, she said in many cases, hospitals forced the overtime on the nurses who are getting paid a meagre amount of 30 to 40 cents for every hour of extra work.

Nurses have held several rounds of nationwide demonstrations in the past few years to protest their low wages and the authorities’ inattention to their demands.

Driven by economic and professional problems, as well as lack of social and political freedoms, an increasing number of Iran’s healthcare professionals emigrate.

Around 10,000 healthcare practitioners have left Iran over the past two years to work in the Arab world. With economic and financial conditions at rock bottom, MP Hossein Ali Shahriari, chairman of the Iranian parliament’s Health and Treatment Committee, said most have gone to the Persian Gulf countries, including Oman and the United Arab Emirates.