Denmark: uncertain legislative elections in a context of health crisis

The November 1 ballot opposes fourteen parties. Favorite, Social Democrat puts Frederiksen could be competed for for the post of Prime Minister by his former opponent, Lars Lokke Rasmussen.


In the summer of 2021, they went on strike for more than two months, before Parliament intervened and ended the social movement. The nurses claimed an increase of 5,000 crowns (670 euros) per month. They had to settle for the standard increase of just over 5 % over three years granted to all civil servants. A year later, they are at the forefront of the electoral campaign, before the legislative elections of 1 er November, while the crisis of the health system has imposed itself as one of the main themes of the ballot.

For a year, 6 % of nurses employed in public hospitals have slammed the door. Some have changed their profession. Others have joined the private sector, where wages are on average 14 % higher and more flexible hours. Suddenly, 5,000 nurses are missing in hospitals. Whole services must have been closed and every day new patients are sent to the private sector.

“The situation is quite serious, since even fairly urgent operations had to be postponed,” notes Jes Sogaard, professor of health economics at the University of South Denmark. In Copenhagen, it is now necessary to wait eight to ten days to have a fracture in your leg. A situation that should not improve: “The population is aging, which means more patients, while the number of nurses formed,” said Mr. Sogaard.

maintain the quality of The welfare state

For nurses, an increase in their wages would be a good start. “This would facilitate recruitments and therefore make it possible to improve working conditions,” said Anni Pilgaard, vice-president of the Danish nurses’ union. It recalls that it is also a question of correcting an inequality which dates from 1969, when the collective negotiation model in the public sector was put in place: “At the time, the nurses’ salaries were fixed below Those of teachers or police, who were often positions occupied by men, and the gap has never been filled. “

A few days before the elections, the Prime Minister’s social democratic party, puts Frederiksen, who fights for a second term, announced, on October 25, a plan aimed at increasing the salaries of civil servants – and in particular Nurses – 3 billion crowns by 2030. “If we want to maintain the quality of our welfare state, we must absolutely resolve recruitment problems in the health sector, knowing that there will be 125,000 people from More than 70 years additional by 2030, “says Jeppe Kofod, outgoing foreign minister, a close friend of Pette Frederiksen.

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/Media reports.