Nigeria Association of Resident Doctors, Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital (OOUTH), Sagamu, Ogun State, on Monday announced the commencement of an indefinite strike.
The action, they said, is due to depreciation in doctors’ health in recent time.
The doctors’ poor health was linked to “enormous persistent decline in the workforce” in the state which had made them overworked.
In a statement signed by the chairman and secretary of the association, Osikoya Oludotun and Ajose Oluwafemi respectively, after its meeting on Monday, the doctors lamented serious reduction in workforce.
They said the situation had led to the loss of accreditation for full training of resident doctors and had taken a toll on the health of some doctors in the hospital.
They disclosed that they were aware of the last administration’s stance on the management of OOUTH not to exceed a certain wage bill, wondering why the wages of resident doctors, who had exited the system could not be used for the employment of new doctors.
The statement also noted that the patient load over the years without a commensurate number of resident doctors, had prevented doctors from preparing adequately for their postgraduate examinations and the training of younger doctors and medical students.
The doctors said they were forced to resort to an indefinite strike, as several meetings with the previous and current administrations in the state to address the issue failed to yield any positive response.
They however, demanded that the state government, as a matter of urgency, fill vacant positions of resident doctors, who had exited the system over the years.
The union said this would prevent poor outcomes, breakdown of health of doctors, low morale and uncordial relationships among the staff of the teaching hospital.
“The decline has many implications which include: loss of accreditation for full training of resident doctors.
This is already happening. “Frequent breakdown in health of the workers; there has been at least one incidence of a young doctor, who collapsed on duty. Thank God, she was resuscitated. “We have met on several occasions with the representatives of the state government both in the previous and current administrations.
“We have been forced to resort to this measure, after many notices and warnings that we cannot go on like this, hoping that the government will wake up to the real issues.
“We are aware that the governor of the state, Dapo Abiodun, set up an administrative panel to look into the matters of the teaching hospital, which we hope would sort things out. “But it appears the panel’s focus is on long term infrastructure, with no clear regard for the present discharge of health care to the citizens of the state.
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