City health workers start job boycott to push for better terms – PHOTOS
Health workers in Nairobi and across the country have made good their threat to boycott work to push the government to implement a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) they signed in June 2013.
This is after the 21-day strike notice they issued on November 14 expired on Monday.
Dr Fredrick Oluga, the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union (KMPDU) general secretary, on Monday told NTV that they were keeping off hospitals because the government had dishonoured the CBA for three years.
Their strike is in defiance of a temporary order by the Employment and Labour Relations Court on Friday stopping industrial action, and calls by Health CS Cleopa Mailu and Council of Governors to work as talks continue.
The medics are pushing for review of job groups, promotions, deployment and transfer of medical officers, as well as remuneration, according to the inked CBA.
In particular, the document addresses understaffing, with the ministry asked to employ at least 1,200 doctors yearly over the next four years to reduce the doctor-patient ratio. There is one doctor for at least 16,000 Kenyans.
The strike by the nearly 5,000 doctors, clinicians, pharmacists, dentists and other health professionals is likely to affect service delivery at over 2,700 public health facilities — including Kenyatta National Hospital and Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital in Eldoret, where most Kenyans seek emergency medical care.