Members of the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) will gather in Dublin tomorrow for their annual general meeting amid the threat of strike action by non-consultant hospital doctors (NCHDs), formerly known as junior doctors.
The IMO says that NCHDs are demoralised, frustrated and angry over long-standing concerns about working conditions, safe hours and routine breaches of contract.
NCHDs are currently being balloted for industrial action, up to and including strike action.
The ballot will close on 9 June.
The concerns of NCHDs will be highlighted at tomorrow's meeting of the IMO which will be addressed by the Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly.
The theme of the AGM is "Capacity Overload – A System at Breaking Point" and reflects what the union says is the huge levels of stress now being seen across the health services.
Incoming IMO President, Dr Clive Kilgallen, said the meeting was happening at a critical juncture for the health service.
"Our NCHDs are waging an exceptionally strong campaign to finally tackle the abusive working conditions which are having such a crippling impact on morale, and which poses such risk to both themselves and to their patients," Dr Kilgallen said.
"But there are problems across the health services from the crisis of waiting lists to recruitment and retention challenges amongst GPs, consultants and public health doctors," he added.
Other topics that will be discussed at the meeting include contract talks for consultants, gender equality in medicine, issues for the health service post-pandemic and the medical response to the conflict in Ukraine.