Countrywide healthcare services crippled

19 September 2019 12:04 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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  • GMOA warns of massive TU action next week

 

By Sandun A. Jayasekera and Sheain Fernandopulle 

Healthcare services in hospitals countrywide came to a  virtual standstill yesterday due to the 24-hour strike launched by the GMOA.   

The one-day token strike launched by the doctors attached  to the GMOA ended this morning, which started from yesterday 8.00 am.   
GMOA Secretary Haritha Aluthge said the incumbent  government had violated the National Salaries Policy by increasing the  salaries of the judicial and legal sectors while neglecting several  other executive officers including medical officers.   


Director of the Colombo National Hospital (CNH), Dr. W.K.  Wickramasinghe said patients attended to Outdoor Patients Departments  (OPDs), clinics and cardio thoracic units were the most affected from  the token strike.   


Routine surgeries were performed as usual at the CNH  yesterday but the OPD, Cardiology Unit and clinics were not functioning  and admission of patients had been suspended Dr. Wickramasinghe noted. Meanwhile, patients who had attended the OPD and clinics at  the CNH were unaware of the token strike, were extremely critical and  angry over the trade union action by doctors.   


Patients, who had come from remote villages, spoke with  frustration claiming that it was pathetic as to why the doctors punish  them for something that they should deal with 
the authorities.   


A. Eswari (44) of Sedawatta Road, Wellampitiya told Daily  Mirror that, she together with her husband Munisamy came to the OPD of  the CNH to seek treatment for her swollen leg and increasing of sugar  level of her husband. 

 
“There are no doctors at the OPD and I have been on this  stool since early in the morning without any treatment or seen by a  doctor. An attendant asked us to come tomorrow,” she lamented. She said  the trade union action of doctors cannot be justified and said it was  extremely inhumane, unethical and indecent to the core. Daily Mirror provincial correspondents said the healthcare  delivery in their respective areas had been disrupted yesterday  consequent to the token strike by doctors.   


However, emergency services at all hospitals during the  time of the strike, were in action while the strike did not affect the  functions at all maternity hospitals, children’s hospitals, Cancer  Hospital – Maharagama, renal treatment centres and military hospital.   


Meanwhile, the GMOA warned  the government that they would not become hesitant to launch a massive  strike from next Wednesday, if they would not provide them with a  concrete and satisfactory solution to the salary anomaly issue.  GMOA Secretary Haritha Aluthge said the incumbent  government had violated the National Salaries Policy by increasing the  salaries of the judicial and legal sectors while neglecting several  other executive officers including medical officers.   


“The memorandum, which was submitted to the Cabinet on  Thursday with the view to rectifying the salary anomalies, does not  envisage a solution to the entire executive officers whereas it has  proposed to provide special privileges to selected sectors,” he said.   

 

 

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