Council Meetings (Oral Question): An Industrial Action of Staff Members of the Hospital Authority (2020.11.12)

MR CHAN KIN-POR (in Cantonese): President, I am grateful to HA staff members who have been holding fast to their posts and I also have to thank healthcare personnel who volunteered to assist HA in providing services during the strike.

Saving people in danger is the bounden duty of healthcare personnel and this is why healthcare personnel are respected by the public. The epidemic situations in various parts of the world, including Europe and America, are far more serious than that in Hong Kong. These countries are severely in lack of equipment and a large number of healthcare personnel have been infected or even died; yet, we have never heard of healthcare personnel in these countries putting on a strike. Does the Government have a backup plan to ensure that the lives and safety of the public will not be affected due to the extensive industrial action?

SECRETARY FOR FOOD AND HEALTH (in Cantonese): President, the industrial action of healthcare personnel that took place from 3 to 7 February is extremely unsatisfactory. I have pointed out in the main reply that the healthcare profession is very important and patients’ health must be given the prime consideration. When facing their responsibilities and patients, the healthcare professionals are not allowed to have any other considerations. This is the professionalism and ethics of healthcare personnel. As Mr CHAN has said just now, this is also the general public’s expectation of the healthcare profession.

After the occurrence of this incident, HA will consider the mechanism as a whole. On the one hand, it has to deal with this incident, and on the other hand, it has to prevent similar incidents from recurring and consider how to deal with similar incidents in the future.

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