Ethical Dilemmas of the Doctors' Strike in Israel
Journal of Medical Ethics. 1985 Jun; 11(2): 70-71.
In 1983, Israeli physicians who were working 65-75 hours a week to earn salaries equal to those of other health professionals mounted a strike against their government employer which lasted four months and culminated in a hunger strike, collapse of a physician-supported interim service, and limitation of care to life-threatening emergencies. Some of the ethical dilemmas faced by the strikers involved the moral and traditional Jewish religious obligations of the doctor, their commitment to socialized medicine, and the compromising of quality of care by overworked physicians. The authors argue that society also has an obligation in health care and that, in countries where society pays doctors' salaries, an independent body should set wages and working conditions. (KIE abstract)
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