Talks at the Labour Relations Commission between hospital consultants and Health Service Executive officials have adjourned.

Consultants’ representatives will discuss with their members a number of the issues which arose during the four-hour session.

The talks centre on new 24-hour rosters, lower entry pay for consultants and cuts to allowances.

Sunday evening has been set as the deadline to reach a settlement.

The Irish Hospital Consultants' Association, the Irish Medical Organisation and the HSE are represented at the LRC.

Eailer, Barry O’Brien of the HSE denied Sunday night's deadline represented a gun to the heads of negotiators.

He said there was frustration on all sides with the lack of progress when all other sections of the health service engaged positively and delivered significant change.

He said the HSE is now asking for the same change from consultants they employ.

He acknowledged there are consultants working on reform and change but said this needs to be evidence based and quantifiable.

Mr O'Brien said the IHCA has known the HSE position on all matters since July. 

This was in response to the IHCA statements that they had only got clarification on some points last Wednesday.

Martin Varley of the IHCA said earlier that he expected the talks to go on all weekend.

He said the consultants' objective is to discuss with management how more patients can be treated despite the budget cuts.

He said his members have already been implementing new clinical programmes with a view to treating more patients that have given rise to substantial savings.