Nairobi doctors issue 7-day strike notice

Written By: Collins Anampiu/ Beth Nyaga
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Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentist Union (KMPDU) Nairobi Branch Secretary-General Thurania Kaugiria

Doctors working in hospitals under the Nairobi County Government have issued a one-week strike notice.

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Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentist Union (KMPDU) Nairobi Branch Secretary-General Thurania Kaugiria announced that their strike will commence on the 21st of this month.

Among their grievances include salary delays as they are yet to receive their July pay, and have no medical insurance.  

Thuranira said the welfare of doctors working in Nairobi county hospitals has not been sufficiently addressed since they have to improvise on the Personal Protective Equipment due to the poor quality of the gears being provided by the county.

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He added that the government has not set aside isolation for doctors in the county.

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He says over 15 doctors have contracted COVID-19 in Nairobi County due to poor quality PPEs issued.

As of last week, Kenya had lost 14 health workers (doctors and other cadres) to the disease and over 600 infected with the disease.

Health Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS), Mercy Mwangangi, in response to the strike notice during her daily COVID-19 brief said that all health workers had received their additional COVID-19 allowances and that she had documentation to prove this claims.

She also in addition said that the Ministry had employed an additional 5,000 health workers overtime across all cadres to help in the fight against COVID-19.

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The CAS in response to the claim that health workers were getting substandard PPEs said the ministry has put in place measures to ensure sourcing of good quality gear which will further be subjected to quality control by the Kenya Bureau of Standards.

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She also urged the doctors to remain confident that they will get efficient PPEs.

“Any health worker with an issue with the quality of the PPE’s should immediately report to the ministry for action,” she said.

On promotions, Mwangangi admitted that there has been a challenge on doctors promotions but that the government and Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) are in talks to iron out the issues.

The CAS also further clarified that there is an isolation facility set aside for medics at the Kenyatta National Hospital and a local hotel.

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