Doctors, nurses strikes paralyze services in Nakuru, Nyeri counties

A ward at the Rift Valley Provincial General

BY NMG

Health services have been paralysed in all public hospitals in Nakuru County after doctors downed their tools demanding a five-month unpaid salary.

And in Nyeri, a strike by nurses that started on May 1 has shut down services in public hospitals in the region, forcing patients to seek services in private hospitals or in neighbouring counties.

The more than 1,000 nurses went on strike to push for the county government to effect their promotions in all cadres.

In Nakuru, the health workers who went on strike on Friday are protesting over unpaid salaries for the months of December, 2016, January, February, March and April, 2017, which they have not received.

Patients are again set for another round of agony and pain following the strike by the doctors and specialists.

Public hospitals in Nyeri were deserted at the beginning of the month, as more than 1, 000 nurses downed their tools in a promotion row.

The nurses are demanding promotions for workers in all job groups, before they resume work.

According to the nurses, the county has not promoted or hired since the start of devolution in 2013.

More than 400 nurses have retired, died or left the hospitals for greener pastures.

They are also lamenting that the working condition in the hospitals is wanting.

For instance, they said the laundry machine at the Nyeri Referral Hospital broke down six months ago but has not been repaired to date.

Patient’s soiled linen are being transported to Karatina District Hospital and Othaya Hospital for cleaning.

“We are disadvantaged, demoralised and fatigued. Nurses in other counties are asking for promotions for the second time,” said Ms Beatrice Nduati, branch secretary of the Kenya National Union of Nurses.

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