Govt yet to make any move on doctors’ strike – GMA

Even though government has made several appeals through the media to striking doctors to rescind their decision, the Ghana Medical Association says the government was yet to make any direct overture.

“As far as I am aware there is no movement [by the government] to resolve the issue,” General Secretary of the GMA, Dr Frank Serebuor told Joy FM’s Top Story as at 5:40pm Monday.

He said the Association has given the government, represented by the Fair Wages and Salary Commission, a seven-day window of opportunity to engage them and bring the issue to a speedy conclusion.

The doctors have laid down their tools over the 2012 allowances and other entitlements including their market premium.

He reiterated an earlier threat by the Vice President of the Ghana Medical Association Dr. Sodzi Sodzi-Tettey that they will withdraw all services including emergency services if the government fails to address their concerns within seven days.

Dr Serebuor maintained: “From next week if we don’t get any conclusion to this matter we would be suspending emergency services…we don’t want it to get to that level anyway that is the reason why we are still giving this kind of window of opportunity.”

When his attention was drawn to the fact that their strike is considered illegal because they render essential service, the GMA General Secretary remarked, “we only hear that we are essential service when we go on strike”.

He also stated that so far as the doctors are concerned, the strike “is not illegal”, pointing out that if there is any issue of illegality then FWSC should be blamed for “breaking the law”, explaining that the Commission has failed to comply with a directive by the National Labour Commission.

Meanwhile, reports from some health facilities in some parts of the country indicate that patients are getting frustrated by the event.

In the Ashanti Region, some patients said they will resort to self-medication, while others at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) have made it clear they will sleep at the facility until they are attended to.

Luv News’ Erastus Asare Donkor reported that nurses at KATH who used to perform some practical duties under the supervision of doctors, are now afraid to take risk without the presence of the doctors.