Officials from the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union (KMPDU) are now calling for President Uhuru Kenyatta’s intervention over failure by the Ministry of Health to address issues touching on healthcare workers’ welfare amid the Covid-19 menace.
In a tweet on Sunday, KMPDU Acting Secretary General Dr Chibanzi Mwachonda said Health Cabinet Secretary (CS) Mutahi Kagwe and his Principal Secretary (PS) Susan Mochache had snubbed the medics for five months now after calls for a meeting to address work-related challenges.
“Dear Mr President: The CS & PS at MoH have failed you in addressing the matters of Health care workers in this country.
“They have persistently declined to engage KMPU on your directives raised herein for the past 5 months,” said Dr Mwachonda.
Dr Mwachonda shared a letter he sent to CS Kagwe dated Thursday, June 18, seeking to discuss the safety of healthcare workers amid the pandemic.
“The Union notes that healthcare workers on the frontline are increasingly getting exposed to Covid-19. So far 84 healthcare workers have been infected with Covid-19, ” read the letter in part.
“We, therefore, request a meeting to deliberate on the way forward regarding the following: Welfare of frontline healthcare workers, occupational safety and health if frontline health care workers.”
Dear Mr President:
The CS & PS at @MOH_Kenya have failed you in addressing the matters of Health care workers in this country. They have persistently declined to engage @kmpdu on your directives raised herein for the past 5 months. @StateHouseKenya pic.twitter.com/X10KatDdEX
— Chibanzi Mwachonda 🇰🇪 (@CMwachonda) November 15, 2020
The union convened a meeting today to deliberate on the way forward as the country continues to lose many medical practitioners to the virus.
Yesterday, the ministry announced that four doctors were among 21 people who succumbed to the disease in a 24-hour period. They are Dr Emarah Ashraf, Dr Hudson Alumera, Dr Jackline Njoroge and Dr Faith Kanjiru Mburu.
The union called on all medical doctors to abstain from duties where the work environment is not safe. They also asked the government to bear the cost of treatment for Covid-19 for all Frontline Health Care Workers and the public.
The President had in April directed that all medical staff receive a welfare package to cushion them against the economic effects of the virus.
The ministry was also expected to ensure the medics work in a safe environment by providing necessary gear especially for those working in public hospitals.