The Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) branch of the Association of Residents Doctors (ARD) will on Monday, June 2 commence an indefinite strike. This is stemming from her emergency general meeting held on Wednesday, May 28. The association unanimously agreed to resume its suspended industrial action and embark on an indefinite strike action.
According to the LUTH ARD President, Dr Olubunmi Omojowolo, the association painfully regret to embark on the strike, but due to lack of appreciable progress in the negotiations and deliberations with the hospital management on the issues raised, “we have found ourselves left with no other choice. As doctors we are gravely concerned about the deleterious impact the astronomical increase in hospital charges is having on patients. “There is increase in numbers of avoidable deaths and morbidity due to inability of patients to afford these fees. This is also affecting our training as resident doctors. The worst affected areas are the surgical subspecialties where patients now discharge against medical advise daily to seek for cheaper and dangerous alternatives.
“For instance the prices of minor surgical procedures such as suturing of lacerations, incision and drainage, debridement, chest tube insertion etc have skyrocketed from N8,000 to to over N50,000. Lack of basic facilities and equipments, chronic shortage of stationeries, epileptic water supply, disorganised and dirty environment, inadequate manpower especially in critical care etc have all lead to very poor service delivery to Nigerians,” he said.
Omojowolo said, “That fresh letters stipulating duration of residency training according to the August 2013 circular be issued to both old and new residents individually immediately. The house however expect the management to act in good faith by implementing the report of the inter ministerial committee on this subject matter without any further delay.” He added that other sundry issues while his members are hanging the stethoscope include demand that the employment list of residents from the outstanding departments ie Clinical pathology, microbiology, haematology, morbid anatomy, OMFS, child dental health, preventive dentistry, oral pathology, radiotherapy be released immediately.
“That the distribution of the letter of skipping be completed immediately. That the numbers of resident being employed in each department is inadequate especially psychiatry where only two new residents have been taken.”
Also, they noted with concern that in spite of assurances from the hospital’s management there is still shortage of materials and consumables, “That up till now, there is no means of communication provided within the hospital by the management. This makes us incur huge amount daily in making patient care related phone calls within the hospital. That the house still reject the current hospital fees regime and its attendant negative impact on residency training.”