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Health ministry begs psychiatric nurses to return to work

The Ministry of Health has urged striking nurses of the Accra psychiatric hospital to call off their strike as it works to address their concerns.

According to the Ministry, some GH¢1 billion will soon be disbursed by the Ministry of Finance for the procurement of some needed logistics for the facility.

The psychiatric nurses on Monday [October 31] declared an indefinite strike, claiming that work at the facility posed serious risk to them.

They lamented that the lack of some logistics and materials at the hospital made if difficult for them to operate.

Some said they have been forced to personally finance the purchase of needed logistics.

But Tony Goodman, the Public Relations Officer of the Ministry of Health told Citi News, “The finance ministry is releasing some money to us. They’ve dealt with the human right aspect of it. So moving forward, we are asking them to go back to work while we deal with the issue.”

He said the ministry has taken steps to acquire some of the logistics the nurses have requested.

“On the things they mentioned, we started providing them. The human resources is one of them. The other things which has to do with commodities, the procurement people are working on it and will get back to us. We are also expecting this GH¢1million from the ministry of Finance, immediately we get it, we will provide some of the medications we believe should be available,” he added.

 

Psychiatric Nurses threaten indefinite strike

Earlier in October, the Psychiatric Nurses at the hospital threatened an indefinite strike over government’s failure to provide the facility with the basic logistics needed to carry out their duties effectively. According to the Chairperson of the Nurses, Jamila Hussein, the lack of medication for patients at the facility rendered staff to vulnerabilities such as physical attacks from patients.

“The patients are either beating us or they are beating other patients. That is the situation now. Those detergents keep the place clean and in section three, the minimum hours a nurse spends in a ward  is eight hours so we are at risk. Some of us are even developing infections.”

 

Accra Psychiatric Hospital shuts down OPD

The hospital suspended services at the department a few weeks ago due to financial constraints.

The situation forced the hospital’s suppliers  to withdraw their services over the unpaid debts.

Others suppliers also dragged the mental facility to court to demand payment.

This is not the first time the nurses of the hospital have embarked on an indefiate strike over poor condition of service.

In 2015, they embarked on an indefinite strike over unpaid salaries following failed promises by government to have the arrears paid.

 

By: Jonas Nyabor/citifmonline.com/Ghana

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