Doctors issue strike notice as medical interns placement dispute escalates

Doctors issue strike notice as medical interns placement dispute escalates

KMPDU Secretary General Dr. Davji Atellah, flanked by other union officials, addresses a press conference on August 21, 2023.

Doctors under the Kenya Medical Practitioners Pharmacists and Dentist Union and Health Cabinet Secretary (CS) Susan Nakumicha, have locked horns over the placement of 1,200 medical interns.

KMPDU formally issued a 7 day strike notice for withdrawal of services by medical practitioners, pharmacists and dentists in all institutions under the Ministry of Health and county governments throughout the republic, as the Health CS maintained that there was no money to facilitate medical interns.

"During a meeting we had yesterday morning with the Ministry, they said their hands are tied. We hope that this strike will untie their hands,"  KMPDU Sec-Gen Dennis Miskellah said.

The medics further accused the National and County Governments of failing to honor a collective bargaining agreement and Court Orders. They further asserted that the planned industrial action will not be called off unless all their demands are addressed.

"Going on strike is not something that we enjoy, because patients will die and its unfortunate, let us not get to that point. The failure of placement of interns lies with the Ministry of Health which saw that budget struck off by Treasury," Miskellah said.  

In a quick rejoinder, Heath CS Nakumicha dismissed the doctors demands as being unrealistic, reiterating that the Ministry's hands are tied on the issue of Interns Placement.

"We cannot do anything as a Ministry, it's up to the Treasury to facilitate...the Government cannot cater for over 3,000 interns at this time, they have to be realistic," Nakhumicha said.  

Apart from KMPDU, other Health Unions, among them Kenya Union of clinical officers, Kenya Union of Nutritionists and Dietitians, Kenya Union of National laboratories officers & Kenya Union of Pharmaceutical Technologists, have also issued countrywide strike notices to relevant Ministries, State Departments and the Council of Governors. They want their demands fully met.


Citizen Digital Ministry of Health KMPDU Citizen TV Kenya Susan Nakhumicha

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