The Medical and Dental Consultants’ Association of Nigeria (MDCAN) has described as false the claim by members of the Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU) that the nation’s public hospitals were completely shut down.
This was contained in a statement issued on Friday by MDCAN’s National President, Prof. Ngim Ngim and Secretary-General, Dr Affiong Ibanga in Calabar.
According to MDCAN, medical doctors still render services to the public, including members of the striking workers.
It said that JOHESU’s attempt to paralyse the health sector in order to force the government to give in to their demands was unsuccessful.
MDCAN, however, said it recognised the right of workers to negotiate terms of compensation with their employers.
“The federal government should take into consideration the internationally recognised practice of relativity in wages of professionals in the health sector.
“This is not peculiar to Nigeria. A government must regard the issue of relativity as sacrosanct in their negotiations with the striking health workers.
“Consultants and indeed all medical doctors in the country will not accept any decision that further erodes the existing relativity in salaries and wages, for which there is an extant agreement.
“Medical doctors had in the spirit of comradeship and carrying along other health workers accepted a much lower relativity ratio than what was previously obtainable in the country and worldwide.’’
The association advised the federal government to implement the Yayale Ahmed committee report on the resolution of inter-professional disharmony in the health sector in order to end the crisis in the health sector.
It also frowned at the physical assault of doctors by members of JOHESU and locking up of some parts of hospitals.
The association appealed to members of JOHESU to suspend their strike so as have a sustainable and uninterrupted health care delivery in the country.
While commending medical doctors, consultants and other stakeholders for rendering services, the association expressed confidence in the ability of Prof. Isaac Adewole, the Minister of Health to resolve the crisis.