More strikes will be held next month if the dispute isn't resolved

Nurses and midwives will strike for 24 hours on Wednesday January 30th.

40,000 members of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) will take part in the work stoppage.

If the dispute continues, there'll be further action on February 5th, 7th, 12th, 13th and 14th.

The dispute centres on low wages, as well as recruitment and retention problems.

The Government has repeatedly ruled out granting the 12% pay rise sought by nurses, saying there would be knock on claims across the public sector.

The union says that the low levels of pay mean the public health service is unable to recruit and retain enough nurses and midwives to safely care for patients.

Members of the INMO last year voted in favour of strike action by 95%.

The strike action will see INMO members withdraw their labour - providing only emergency and lifesaving care.

If strike action goes ahead, it would be only the second time INMO members have taken the action - the last time being 1999.