The Australian Nursing Federation believes the aged care sector will suffer as nurses face a $300 a week pay cut.
The ANF said they were deeply disappointed at the decision last week by the Australian Industrial Relations Commission to reject a two year delay to the award modernization process for NSW and Queensland nurses.
ANF acting federal secretary Lee Thomas said it would result in cuts of up to $300 a week from nurse wages and could result in many leaving the sector.
About 15,000 nurses will be affected, 10,000 of those from NSW.
Ms Thomas said it was likely a percentage of these nurses would have no choice but to leave the aged care sector as they struggled to pay mortgages and keep up with the increasing cost of living.
“This is a great shame for the nurses who love their work and the older Australians who depend on them,” she said.
“The biggest losers here will be the residents, 70 per cent of who have complex medical needs that require nurse expertise.”