The FNV has criticised the hospital employers for making a completely unacceptable offer in the run up to negotiations on 19 March. There is so far only an indication of a "competitive" pay rise and otherwise proposals to worsen the current agreement, particularly with a threat of cutting employer contributions to medical expenses. The union is calling for a 5% pay increase and additional pay for irregular working hours. It also wants increased compensation for travel expenses, an increased allowance for interns, measures to reduce workloads and improvements to work-life balance. The FNV argues that action on workloads is urgent to make the sector more attractive to new workers and a good agreement is key to reducing the number of self-employed in hospitals.