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Medical Doctors, Lamenting Poor State Of Health Sector, Prepare For Strike

September 13, 2016

Dr. Onyebueze urged the government to implement its agreement with health workers, including upgrading the infrastructure in teaching hospitals, urgent action against poliomyelitis and Lassa fever, and the immediate release and implementation of the report on the Residency Training Programme.

The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) has given the federal government two weeks to resolve all pending issues in the health sector or face a massive industrial action at the end of the month, The Punch newspaper said on Tuesday.

Dr. John Onyebueze, president of the association, disclosed the ultimatum to journalists at the end of NARD’s 26th Annual General Meeting in Enugu.

Among the outstanding issues are unpaid salaries, and Dr. Onyebueze said he could not guarantee industrial harmony in the health sector if the poor state of the health sector remained by the end of September.

Dr. Onyebueze urged the government to implement its agreement with health workers, including upgrading the infrastructure in teaching hospitals, urgent action against poliomyelitis and Lassa fever, and the immediate release and implementation of the report on the Residency Training Programme. 

“Are you talking about the rickety beds in the accident and emergency wards? We do not even have gloves and emergency tools. We do not have pens to write and make prescriptions. We are saying that this thing must not continue.” 

The association also demanded that the government fast track action on the bailout funds for tertiary health institutions in the States, as previously agreed, and ensure the migration of all NARD members to the IPPIS platform. 

“Centers that are not deducting pension contributions from our members should immediately commence, while all centers should ensure full remittance of deducted contributions of our members to the Pension Fund Administrators,” the association demanded. 

Dr. Onyebueze also stated that his association rejected in its entirety, the ‘no work no pay’ rule, as currently being applied by the Federal Ministry of Health, in line with extant labor laws.