Doctors demand night shift transport over attacks

Union officials claim they have lost seven doctors in Nakuru, Meru, Kisumu and Baringo counties.

Wednesday January 20 2016

Kenyatta National Hospital. A medical student was shot by thugs as he walked home from the institution. The doctors' union has said it will withdrawal its members from night shift duties if transportation is not provided for staff. PHOTO |JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Kenyatta National Hospital. A medical student was shot by thugs as he walked home from the institution. The doctors' union has said it will withdrawal its members from night shift duties if transportation is not provided for staff. PHOTO |JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP  

By EUNICE KILONZO
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The doctors’ union has threatened to withdraw its members from working night shift over growing fears of insecurity.

Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union Secretary-General Ouma Oluga said doctors had experienced “several attacks” and the national government should step in to protect them.

“We want to stop all night duties if no transport is offered to doctors. We have lost seven doctors in Nakuru, Meru, Kisumu and Baringo. In Moyale, a doctor was attacked while in a theatre,” said Dr Oluga.

RISK THEIR LIVES

“We will advise our members not to risk their lives if hospitals do not offer them transport and accommodation when they are on duty.”

Health Principal Secretary Nicholas Muraguri said the immediate solution to the problem is “for doctors on duty to stay at the hospital until the shift is over. We, however, know this may not be possible for all doctors because of limited facilities”.

In a telephone interview with the Nation, he said: “Hospitals know the guidelines of what to do when a doctor is on call. They should provide transport or have call rooms for those on night duty.”

“Hospitals should facilitate movements of their doctors.”

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