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Please negotiate, Keneally urges nurses

NSW nurses vote to strike.

NSW Premier Kristina Keneally has urged the nurses union to heed the industrial umpire's ruling and call off a strike planned for Wednesday (November 24).

The NSW Nurses Association is calling for a major overhaul of the state's public hospital and health care system through the introduction of mandated nurse-to-patient ratios.

After negotiations with the government hit a brick wall, nurses voted on Friday to strike on Wednesday, in breach of a ruling by the Industrial Relations Commission.

Keneally says the government has been conducting negotiations in good faith, and has urged the union to call off the strike.

"I'm quite disappointed that the Nurses' Association has decided to take this action," she said.

"We are in a process of negotiation, we're there in good faith, we're having good discussions.

"It's very difficult to do that when industrial action is threatened and I would encourage them to take great heed of the Industrial Relations Commission's ruling - and that is that this strike should not occur."

But NSW Nurses' Association general secretary Brett Holmes told AAP nurses had been negotiating for seven months without progress.

"The government's idea of negotiating on the nurse patient ratio is short and made up of two letters - N and O," he said.

"We don't call that negotiation."

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