Majority of nurses reject night shift bonus plan
The Taiwan Union of Nurses Association says nearly 57% of nurses are rejecting the cabinet's night-shift bonus plan.
The association says those who oppose it believe the plan will not help alleviate the nursing shortage, which has worsened since the coronavirus pandemic began in 2020.
Data from the Ministry of Health show there are about 310,000 registered professional nurses in Taiwan. However, as of 11 October, less than 189,000 are working, and of that number, about 118,000 are working in hospitals. Figures also show that the turnover rate of nursing staff in 2022 was just under 12%, while the vacancy rate stood at just over 6.5%. Both of the figures were 10-year highs.
The cabinet approved a 12-point incentive programme late last month, which includes paying a bonus to night-shift nurses, with the aim of improving working conditions. However, the plan has been criticised by many nurses, with some expressing concerns that offering an additional bonus only to night-shift nurses could cause an inequitable distribution of nursing personnel and lead to fewer day-shift nurses.