The current strike action embarked upon by the Gombe State chapter of the Association of Resident Doctors (ARD) three days ago has snowballed into a crisis in the health sector.
Investigations have just revealed that following the failure of the state government to meet up with its obligations to the youth corps medical doctors serving in the state, the corps members posted to the state are now rejecting the postings.
According to Doctors Kelly Emelis Wurudai and Olanrewaju Oluwayomi, many Corp members posted to the State have relocated from the State due to where they will be better appreciated.
The NYSC Doctors, who are among few others from grade levels 15 and above offering service at different health facilities, said the situation has mounted an unprecedented pressure on them.
Dr. Kelly Emelis, who completed his NYSC service last October but still maintains a contract work under the Performance-Based Financing at the Infectious Disease Hospital Zambuk, Yamaltu-Deba LGA, said he is under the intense pressure of attending to no fewer than 110 patients a day since the strike commenced on Monday.
According to him, out of the four Doctors in the facility, he is the only one on duty now as the three others are now on strike adding that before the strike, a Doctor attends to an average of 30 patients a day.
He explained that due to the situation on the ground, they only perform emergency surgeries and refer other cases further.
He regretted that due to the failure of the State Government to honour their obligation of paying NYSC Doctors N65.000 in the last two years, the number of Doctors has gone down.
He said the State Commissioner of Health, Dr. Ahmed Mohammed Gana, was misinformed when he went on local radio stations in the State a day before and announced that the said amount had been paid including those that have passed out.
Corroborating Dr. Kelly’s statement, Dr. Olanrewaju Oluwayomi, who serves in Gombe State Cottage Hospital, Bamabam, Balanga LGA, said even without the State Government allowances, they were still committed to their humanitarian duties especially now that the resident Doctors have downed their tools.
However, our correspondent gathered that apart from the Gombe State Specialist Hospital and Zainab Bulkachuwa Children and Women Hospital all in Gombe, the State capital, many other health facilities are hit hard by the Doctors strike.
Dr. Muazu Shuaibu Ishaq, CMD of Gombe Specialist Hospital and Dr. Bello Ambi, Chief Medical Officer of the Women and Children Hospital told reporters separately that despite the pressure occasioned by the strike, medical services are still ongoing.
A patient in Zambuk, Umar Suleiman Dukku told reporters that this is not the best of time for him as he had been in the hospital for over three hours and has not seen even when he is number 50 on the line.
Source: INDEPENDENT Newspaper
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