The Council of Ministers approved this Tuesday the reform of the framework statute for health personnel, which will stabilize more than 67,000 professionals. The Royal Decree sets a maximum of three years for temporary contracts, eliminates the figure of the eventual and creates that of the substitute to cover vacations, duty exemptions and reduced hours.
The modification of Law 55/2003, promoted by the Ministry of Health, is part of the regulations approved by the Government at the end of last year to reduce temporary employment in the public sector to below 8% by 2025, as required by the European Union. The stabilization of employment was also included in the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan to receive European funds.
Over the next few months, the Executive will continue to fine-tune with the unions and the communities the details of this “very important step” to “end the job insecurity” that Health has suffered for decades, in the words of President Pedro Sánchez this Sunday when announcing the measure in the newspaper The country.
It will be “the greatest stabilization of health professionals in the history of the National Health System”, according to the Government, while the unions and the opposition have recalled that it is the compliance with a judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union. In 2016, the institution criticized the high rate of temporary employment in the Spanish public sector, which gave rise to the aforementioned law to reduce temporary employment, approved in December 2021.
“It is a reform that we owed to the health personnel of our country, to whom we are going to give stability at all levels,” said the Government spokesperson and Minister of Territorial Policy, Isabel Rodríguez, this Tuesday, and assured that the “stable and quality” employment in the Public Administration in general is a “commitment” of the Executive.
Limits to the interim
According to the text of the reform, to which RTVE has had access, when three years of interim are completed, the autonomous communities will have to create the places that continue to be necessary and thus fill the vacancies with permanent staff. However, there will be exceptions in the event that the square is not covered in the oppositions.
The law tries to set limits on the hiring of interns only for “expressly justified reasons of necessity and urgency”, although they are contemplated for “temporary programs” that do not involve the performance of “tasks or the coverage of permanent needs”.
Another case in which it will be allowed to hire interims is the “excess or accumulation of tasks” for “a maximum period of nine months within an 18-month period”. In all these cases, once the three years are up, the Law categorically states that it will be necessary to “process the creation of a structural position in the center’s staff”.
In the event that a place is not created within the established time, “A new appointment may not be made for the same cause in a period of two years”, establishes the Royal Decree, which is addressed to the autonomous communities, since the health competencies are transferred. In addition, failure to stay “will give rise to financial compensation”, which “will be equivalent to twenty days of their fixed remuneration per year of service.”
The Law will enter into force the day after its publication in the Official State Gazette (BOE). However, and due to the changes and the negotiations that arise, the Executive has granted the autonomous communities an additional period of four months to “make the necessary changes in the human resources information systems”.