Doctors announce national strike from December 6th

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The announcement of the observation of the strike, scheduled between the 6th and 10th of December, in all health units in the eighteen provinces, was presented this Tuesday at a press conference by the secretary general of Sinmea, Pedro da Rosa.

According to the union leader, the strike was deliberated at the general meeting of doctors, held on 20 November, in Luanda, with the participation of around 400 doctors and 1500 more who participated virtually.

Health professionals deliberated the strike for five days and while the strike lasts minimal services will be provided in the emergency and intensive care banks.

“The infirmary activities and external consultations are suspended”, said the Sinmea leader.

The need for a special remuneration regime, the payment of subsidies, “better working conditions, lack of disposable materials, lack of medication in hospitals and the increase in the mortality rate for minors” are some of Sinmea’s concerns.

For the medical profession, there is a “glaring lack of essential medicines to fight endemic diseases such as malaria, diarrheal diseases, respiratory diseases, especially tuberculosis”.

“New health units were created within the framework of the PIIM (Integrated Intervention Program in Municipalities) with the increase in the number of beds, but, however, neither doctors nor nurses are recruited in these hospitals”, stressed Pedro da Rosa.

Angola “has many doctors trained with State money on unemployment or working as volunteers”, he stressed, regretting, however, the suspension, 18 months ago, of the doctor and union president, Adriano Manuel, considering the measure as ” lack of patriotism on the part of those who govern”.

Pedro da Rosa also noted that the Angolan medical profession is very poorly renumbered, referring that one doctor in Angola does the work of five, a situation that contributes to their accelerated physical and psychological wear.

“If there is no rapid intervention by those who direct us, there will be chaos. In the post-pandemic period, the West will be able to open up to migration. There are not few doctors who want to emigrate. Be alert,” he pointed out.

Despite the deliberate strike, the general assembly of Angolan doctors also encouraged the negotiating committee to build bridges for dialogue with the employer.

Adriano Manuel, president of Sinmea, announced, at this press conference, that “luckily” the Ministry of Health has already reacted to the strike announcement and “negotiations should start on Wednesday”.

“In principle the strike will go away, unless the Ministry of Health gives us sufficient reason not to, and there are issues that we will not abdicate such as salaries, allowances and working conditions,” he noted.

“We cannot accept that we have a volume of patients dying and we see them without the minimum possible conditions, we want the doctors to fit in to improve the quality of service provision in the periphery”, also defended Adriano Manuel.

The National Union of Doctors of Angola controls more than 3,000 professionals from the most diverse specialties spread across the country. Source: Verangola