A statement issued by the ministry on Friday indicated that as providers of essential services, the striking doctors were enjoined by section 162 of the Labour Act to refer any issues they may have with negotiation processes to the Labour Commission if they were of the view that negotiation have broken down but the doctors who have been on strike since Thursday have indicated they will remain on strike till government shows commitment to the process.
STATEMENT TO HEADS OF INSTITUTIONS ON THE STRIKE ACTION BY GHANA MEDICAL ASSOCIATION(GMA)
The Ministry of Health wishes to state that as negotiations continue to resolve the withdrawal of Outpatient Department services by the Doctors in the public health sector, the Ministry of Health provides the following guidelines to institutions:
1. All Heads of Directories in all health facilities should be at post to work with the other non-striking staff available during the period of the strike action.
2. Heads of the various units should ensure that there are continuous emergency services, including maternity services at all health facilities.
3. Patients on admission should be continuously managed as long as they remain in the facility.
4. All emergency rooms should remain open for non-striking staff to handle emergency cases and co-ordinate referrals with all quasi-government health institutions including the Military and Police hospitals across the country.
5. Managers of health facilities must be in constant communication with quasi health institutions to ensure the delivery of seamless emergency care during the period.
6. The Ministry of Health had directed that all ambulance services should remain on standby across the country to help coordinate emergency services.
7. The Ministry of Health is monitoring the situation to ensure the provision of emergency health response in major facilities as well as continue to provide the necessary logistics needed to mitigate the effects of the strike action.
8. The public is advised to remain calm as Government continues with negotiations to find amicable settlement to the crisis.
9. The Minister of Health is appealing to the doctors to restore their Out Patient care while negotiations continue.
The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) is aware that as providers of essential services, they are enjoined by section 162 of the Labour Act to refer any issues they may have with the negotiation process to the Labour Commission if they are of the view that negotiation havebroken down.
The ministry is therefore urging the GMA members to rescind their decision and return to work while they continue to negotiate or refer the matter to National Labour Commission.
By: Jonas Nyabor/233livenews