For the first time in 30 years, thousands of nurses will walk off the job at 7 am tomorrow morning.
They will picket outside hospitals for 24 hours after last minute attempts to stop the strike failed.
The impacts of the strikes are already being felt widely. Ssix to eight thousand elective surgeries have been deferred in the lead up to tomorrow to clear out hospitals.
DHB spokesperson Helen Mason says patients should still visit emergency departments if they need to.
Infometrics economist Brad Olsen told Chris Lynch that this is an arm wrestle between the Government and the nurses.
He says it has wider implications than just the nurses, with teachers and other public servants looking for pay rises as well.
He says the Government will need to be careful, as this case will be precedent setting.
LISTEN TO BRAD OLSEN TALK WITH CHRIS LYNCH ABOVE