The national doctors’ union, Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Union (KMPDU) Thursday suspended its 30-day strike notice after holding talks with the government through the Council of Governors (CoG) and the Ministry of Health (MoH).
They had issued a strike notice that was set to start on January 6.
They accused the government of failing to honor their Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) signed in 2017.
KMPDU Secretary General Dr. Davji Atellah noted that they have opted to call off their action and prioritize the health of citizens as they await further dialogue with respective authorities.
“We don’t intend to put Kenyans to suffer. It is important for Kenyans to get health services even though doctors need to be supported and trained, there is a need to see the vulnerability of doctors,” said Dr. Atellah.
Dr. Atellah thanked Health Cabinet Secretary (CS) Susan Nakhumicha for agreeing to meet their demands, among them posting medical interns and paying fees for postgraduate doctors.
“One of the things from them was the posting of medical interns and the CS undertook to be done by next week,” he noted.
“The other thing was the payment of fees for the postgraduate doctors. This has also been given a commitment that it will be sorted within this month of January.”
Atellah said in the next two months, the ministry will employ more doctors on permanent and pensionable terms to assuage the worsened state of service delivery in hospitals.
The demand to establish a Health Service Commission, Atellah added, will also be considered to allow health workers to have a stake at the deliberation’s table in allocating budgets for the nation’s health sector.
“We have said that the creation of a health service commission, which was one of the promises of the government to health workers that there will be a centralized board between county governments and healthcare workers,” he noted.
“It is important because it will make sure that there is government budgets for healthcare workers.”