Doctors’ Strike May End Soon

This is even as private hospitals, especially in Abuja, are counting the gains of the four-day old strike embarked upon by the resident doctors to press home their demands for better condition of service. The meeting, convened by the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chief Emeka Wogu, is expected to lead to the calling off of the ongoing strike. Although details of the meeting were not available at the time of filing this report, a source said that a compromise was likely. However, as the strike lingers, private hospitals in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, are counting gains from increased patronage by patients. Major Federal Government- owned hospitals are also struggling to attend to in-patients and emergency cases, while patronage by out-patients continues to decline. When our reporter visited the National Hospital yesterday, a few patients were seen on hospital beds being attended to by consultants, who are not part of the ongoing industrial action. In an interview with National Mirror, the Public Relations Officer of the hospital, Mr. Tayo Hastrupp, said: The consultants are working, but the resident doctors are not working. The issue is if we had received 100 patients before, it would reduce. We are attending to emergencies. Our patients are in the wards. The doctors, who are youth corps members and house officers are not working, but consultants will continue to work; there is no way the strike of the resident doctors will not affect the rate of work in the hospital. The Chief Medical Director, University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, UATH, Dr. Peter Alabi, called on the striking doctors to consider the plight of Nigerians and dialogue with the government on their grievances. The CMD made the call in an interview with journalists, stressing that the hospital was coping with challenges arising from the strike. Similarly, the Federal Staff Hospital, Abuja, had fewer patients than other federal hospitals in the FCT as a result of the strike.

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