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Editorials

EDITORIAL: Prevent doctors’ strike

Health Secretary Mutahi Kagwe
Health Secretary Mutahi Kagwe. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The welfare and protection of health workers in the front line of the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic are paramount.

They are putting their lives on the line to save those of their countrymen and countrywomen.

Among the challenges that medical staff face are inadequate personal protective equipment, having to work for long hours and the fear of carrying the virus home and infecting loved ones.

More than 1,000 healthcare workers have been exposed to the virus, with 16 succumbing to the deadly disease.

The government’s Covid-19 medical emergency allowance and benefits scheme worth Sh3.4 billion in April to motivate the healthcare workers isn’t nearly enough to compensate them for their sacrifice.

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The doctors’ union wants the the benefits scheme to be in place until the end of the pandemic as opposed to three months.

But rushing to call out its members on strike isn’t the best way to express their grievances at this time.

It will worsen an already stretched healthcare system. It is therefore paramount that both sides sit down to negotiate a realistic deal while appreciating the brave efforts of the medical workers.

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