Patients were stranded at government owned hospitals as doctors downed tools.
Medical doctors practicing in government owned hospitals in Plateau State on Wednesday totally complied with the directive of Nigeria Medical Association, NMA, to embark on a total, indefinite nationwide strike.
Doctors were away from their duty post when PREMIUM TIMES visited the Jos University Teaching Hospital, JUTH, and the Plateau Specialist Hospital, a state government owned hospital,.
A patient who had a date with a consultant at JUTH, Aguda Paul, said
he was stranded.
“I am not happy because I was told that I cannot see my doctor today due to the strike,” he said.
Mr. Aguda said his situation demanded serious attention and he was booked to see the doctor on Wednesday.
According to a seven-page open letter to the federal government, co-signed by the NMA President, Kayode Obembe, and Secretary, Adewunmi Alayaki, the medical doctors are seeking “better welfare package for practicing doctors serving in government owned hospital”.
Addressing the JUTH staff, the chapter chairman, Christopher Yilgwan, said doctors at the hospital would not resume work until their demands were absolutely met.
However, nurses were seen rendering medical service to patients at both Plateau Specialist hospital and JUTH. But many other patients on appointment including those in need of emergency treatment were denied access to doctors.
The NMA said it is “opposed to the appointment of directors in the hospitals. All health workers should attain the height of their career (GL17) without the nomenclature of directors.”
The medical union also demanded for immediate payment of their arrears.
“The NMA also demand the immediate payment of the arrears of the corrected relativity for 22 years during which members were short changed.”