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Resident doctors assure patients of treatment during strike

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LAGOS – Resident doctors at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), Idi-Araba, on Tuesday assured patients already on admission that house officers and consultants would attend to them as the doctors strike lasted.
 
The branch President of National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), Dr Omojowolo Olubunmi, gave the assurance in an interview told the Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.
 
Olubunmi said that the consultants and house officers would attend to the patients during the three-day nation-wide warning strike and during LUTH resident doctors’ local strike.
 
 
“The emergency department is shutdown; all departments in the hospital, all resident doctors are not working.
 
“The only thing is that for patients that are already on admission, we have to show human face. That’s why we said that the house officers can work in conjunction with the consultants.
 
“Those that their cases are not things that can be managed will have to be discharged to another facility.
 
“But there are some that the house officers and the consultants can still manage. But all resident doctors, we have down tools until we get to the bottom of this problem.”
 
Olubunmi said that after the national body’s three days warning strike, LUTH resident doctors would continue with the strike to press for the implementation of all outstanding local demands.
 
He said that the LUTH branch of the association had in April held a three-day warning strike on the issues which the management had yet to address.
 
 
“On skipping and relativity, there is a circular that emanated in January this year from the Head of Civil Service that clearly states what should be the due entitlement of doctors.
 
“But up till now we have yet to have the implementation of this; locally, that is part of why we are part of this industrial action; our action is in synergy with the actions of NARD.
 
“However, our local strike is indefinite; after the national strike of three days we will continue on our strike as long as our demands have not been met.”
 
 
Olubunmi said that the local demands included the increase in the hospital charges which had forced many patients to reject treatments.
 
He said that this had resulted in many avoidable deaths and also affected residency training.
 
Olubunmi said that LUTH members of staff were being denied of basic facilities, equipment, and water supply and also faced with inadequate manpower and bad working conditions.
 
“We appeal to the Federal Government, Minister of Health and well-meaning Nigerians to intervene and proffer urgent solution.
 
In his reaction, Prof. Akin Oshibogun, the LUTH Chief Medical Director, said that the hospital management met with the doctors on Monday.
 
According to him, we (management) are currently working toward resolving the issues they have raised.
 
Resident doctors in all health institutions across the country on Monday embarked on a three-day warning strike over their unresolved demands from the Federal Government.
 
The National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD), through its National President, Dr Jibril Abdullahi, had on May 27, announced that the doctors would begin a three-day warning strike on Monday.
 
Abdullahi said at a news conference in Abuja that their grievances were based on residency training and re-integration of the doctors into the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS).
 
Other demands included payment of three months’ salary arrears owed doctors in the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri and the implementation of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS). (NAN)

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