Kenya: Health Ministry Denies Claims of Neglecting Health Workers After Strike Threat

24 November 2020

Nairobi — The Ministry of Health has denied claims that it has neglected health care workers, after numerous complaints and threats for industrial action.

The unions have been complaining over lack of adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), lack of comprehensive medical cover, employment of more health care workers and lack of risk allowances particularly to those in the frontline in the war against COVID-19.

"Healthcare workers are our front line soldiers in the war against the pandemic. We have not neglected them. The needs of our soldiers must be met and the government is working round the clock to ensure their needs are taken care of," said Dr. Mercy Mwangangi, a Chief Administrative Secretary at the ministry.

Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Union (KMPDU) Secretary-General Dr. Chibanzi Mwachonda on Tuesday said their members were more exposed to the virus, and many were dying. More than 30 nurses and over 15 doctors have succumbed to the virus since April. More than 2,000 others are said to be infected.

Dr. Mwachinda said it was time KEMSA released PPEs in its stores to hospitals.

The union has threatened to down tools from December unless the government takes their plight seriously.

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