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Doctors’ continued strike paralyses Enugu teaching hospital

By Lawrence Njoku, Enugu   |   15 September 2015   |   5:07 am  

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health teaching<br />hospital

MEDICAL services at the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH) Enugu may not be restored soon, as the striking resident doctors have resolved not to return to work despite efforts by the Dr. Christopher Amah-led management to resolve the industrial dispute.

Activities at the hospital have been paralysed for more than two months.

The Guardian learnt that, despite doctors’ absence from duty posts, they have received their salaries but insisted that unless the skipping allowances and other demands made by their union were resolved they would not return to work.

At present, the hospital is unable to admit patients into the wards while doctors are not available at the General Out-Patients Department (GOPD), leaving only the Emergency, Cardiothoracic, Intensive Care, Renal Units, Ante-natal clinic and the Eye Theatre as the only departments rendering services.

Chief Medical Director of UNTH, Dr. Christopher Amah, and other management staff had held talks with the aggrieved medical workers, comprising resident doctors, Medical Officers and House Officers between July 5 when the strike commenced and last Friday, September 11, pleading with them to call off the strike in the interest of the suffering patients.

The CMD had explained to them that “there was no circular from the Federal Ministry of Health authorizing implementation of the skipping allowance”, assuring that once the fund was appropriated in the next budget the management would not hesitate to pay the allowances.

It was gathered that while some leaders of the medical workers union had agreed to suspend the strike, having investigated and realised that there was no fund actually released to the hospital for the payment, some officials of the union led by leaders of the Association of Resident Doctors have vowed to continue with the strike.

The Union leaders, who met last Friday, according to one of the members, took a decision not to resume work demanding that the management should release funds from its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) to pay the skipping allowances.
The management was said to have explained to the aggrieved medical workers that the IGR was not meant to be used in settling workers’ entitlements, adding that with the recent directive on the operation of Treasury Single Account by the Federal Government, such expenditure could not be authorised by the hospital.

“It is becoming very clear to us that some of our colleagues in the medical sector have other motives beyond the implementation of the skipping allowances, which was our main reason for embarking on the strike since July.  They want to play politics with the strike which many of us have said is no longer necessary because our colleagues in other teaching hospitals have already called off the strike.”

He disclosed that many of the striking doctors who are sympathetic to the plight of the patients, had during the union’s meeting last Friday expressed desire to return to work, more so when they had been paid for the period they did not work, but this was turned down by some union leaders “who are bent on causing unnecessary trouble in the hospital.”

Following the directive by the Federal Ministry of Health to the Teaching Hospitals nationwide that implementation of skipping be suspended since there was no fund appropriated for it in this year’s budget, medial workers at other Federal Teaching Hospitals in Calabar, Ibadan, Lagos, Nnewi and the National Orthopeadic Hospital, Enugu have since called of their strike. However, they were said to have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), with their management agreeing to implement the skipping allowances as soon as funds were available for it.

Efforts to speak with the Chairman of the Association of Resident Doctors, UNTH Chapter, Dr Alloy Ifedinso Ugwoke, on the matter on Sunday were unsuccessful as his phone was not reachable.                                                
The Guardian could not also reach Dr. Amah, the chief medical director, as his telephone line continued to ring out on Sunday.



  • gogolagos

    the story of Parklane is what I can tell. unfortunately it happened that I was one of their victim. I had very bad experience that I will never wish my worst enemy in life. it happened my relative was admitted in Parklane for her health their I saw what people of Enugu state are suffering in terms of health care. it was the worst I have ever seen in Nigeria. to start Enugu government over employed personnel who are doing nothing or they do not know they work they are doing. these staffs have no respect for patients and they insult them often and on , as if they were the cause of the poor health condition they have. the number of people employed are too much to the extent that they have no table to do their work, in which in most case they are not will to do. I think that mass employment at parklane is so called political employment. they were employed not there are vacant posts but because some politicians in Enugu state decided to employ their relatives and nothing more. Anther point is that there is poor management from the lowest level to the highest including the MD. is hardly you see so called chief consultant in their office. all the chief consultant are working a private clinic where the junior staff or graduating doctors will refer you in case of need. nostanding all these agony that patients go through they will carry the bond to pay or buy all the medical items needed to treat them, from cotton to syringe. I think that 70% of the staff working at parklane are not needed or not competent in their job. After all these critics, I have to talk in favor of the units in particularly Emergency, Cardiothoracic and GOPD, these units are doing their best, if you consider that they have nothing to work with. a doctor will take care of over 150 patients a day. emergency and cardiothoracic they operate with tooth and nail, they have nothing to operate with. at times I wonder how these doctors manage to save human life under the condition they are working. they have no medical equipment. in a short word Parklane has become a place to go and died not to be cured. The whole blame is on very poor management by the MD.

    • PONOMAN

      GO AND STUDY MEDICINE PIG

      • gogolagos

        I do know you but I bet you I’m not an illiterate. I’m competent in my field.

        • PONOMAN

          YOU ARE AN EDUCATED ILLITERATE.

          • gogolagos

            at lest I’m educated and know of you

          • PONOMAN

            YOU HAVE MASTERS DEGREE IN IN HUMAN MEAT MANAGEMENT, DRUG TRAFFICKING AND CORRUPTION WITH PHD IN TOTOMETERY OF MARRIED WOMEN ABI. WORTHLESS CERTIFICATES

          • gogolagos

            when an angry nerves has nothing to contribute, it normal shouts!!!!!!!!!

      • gogolagos

        I do not fell complex before any doctor. what is important is that everyone should be professional and honest in his field. nobody should play with the life of others.

        • PONOMAN

          SHUT UP THERE YOU MONKEY. GO AND STUDY MEDICINE. MEDICAL SCHOOL IS STILL OPEN. TAKE YOUR MOTHER TO BABALOWO AND LEAVE DOCTORS ALONE. YOU PIGS LIKE INSULTING DOCTORS.

          • gogolagos

            you are always the same. your argument is always empty. this platform is not for you. you have never write anything reasonable.

          • PONOMAN

            ANIMAL

          • gogolagos

            you have given yourself the best answer!!!!!!!!!!

          • PONOMAN

            PIGGY GO BACK TO YOUR CANNIBALISM

          • gogolagos

            this platform is not a jungle!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • amador kester

    You captured the true spirit of medical dispensation when you reported above that humanitarian doctors eager to report to work to alleviate the patients ordeals were shouted down
    .Thats the practice of medicine in nigeria
    The charlatans fight the true professionals and are often ruthless in their psychopathic frenzy. The wolves wound the lambs.Lupi agni vulnerant

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