Health workers have declared incapacitation, just a few days after some nurses associations went public saying they were satisfied with the conditions of services.
In new development, the entire healthcare sector has written to the government declaring incapacitation as a result of failure by the government to honor pledges to improve workers’ conditions.
The health workers unions include Zimbabwe Senior Hospital Doctors Association (SHDA), the Zimbabwe Nurses Association (ZINA), the Zimbabwe Government Radiographer Association (ZiGRA), Government Therapists Association (GTA), the Zimbabwe Health Workers Union (ZIHWU) and the Zimbabwe Pharmacy Technicians Associations (ZIPTA).
In a letter to the Health Services Board (HSB) Acting Director, Lovemore Mbengeranwa, health workers’ unions indicated that they were withdrawing on-call duties with immediate effect.
“Non-claimable health sector-specific allowances as agreed in CBA 2 of 2018) i.e on-call, call out/ standby, night duty, nurse managers and special health allowances have not been reviewed for two years now. We remind the employer that these allowances are based on work done during odd hours with little compensation being offered by the employer. Uniform allowance is now very negligible and not but any soap or detergent,” said the letter.
With regards to donor-funded Nostro retention allowances, the healthcare workers said the allowances ceased in 2020 and this has led to the massive exodus of healthcare workers as there is little incentive to retain healthcare workers.
“COVID-19 risk allowances, these were also last reviewed in 2020 and as such, are now very negligible considering the exposure of the healthcare workers to the pandemic. Health workers never stopped reporting for duty even when most public servants were at home,” read the letter.
Health workers said the vehicle loan scheme was agreed upon CBA 1OF 2019 and it was unilaterally stopped by the employer.
However, health workers said 20 percent cost of living adjustment made in February 2022 provided little relief to the socio-economic status of the health workers.