Zimbabwe doctors have written a letter to the Health Service Board giving their employer a three weeks grace period to present practical solutions to the medical practitioners’ financial crises.
Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association (ZHDA) president Peter Magombeyi, in the letter that notified of the doctors’ incapacitation, said the medical practitioners’ living conditions have become a health hazard and mental depressant not only to the health workers themselves but also the patients.
“The cost of living has increased more than tenfold and yet salaries have been reviewed by less 10 per cent with meagre cushion allowances which can barely suffice to purchase one basic food basket,” Magombeyi said.
“Members are struggling to meet the costs of basic needs ie food and shelter let alone clothing and healthcare. Forget sending our children to school and paying our bills.”
Finance Minister, last week, however, said that civil servants are happy with the increase in wages that has been given by the government.
The government added a hardship allowance to civil servants and urged the private sector to do the same as the prices of goods rise in Zimbabwe.
“We have done 3 things already; we have paid $63 million at the beginning of the year’s first 3 months and a cushioning allowance in addition to salaries,” Ncube explained.
“We did a salary adjustment worth about $400 million on the first of April throughout the rest of the year and just last week we did another cushioning allowance worthy $143 million.”
The doctors are requesting the government to adjust their earnings according to the inter-market bank rate currently at 8.7.
The medical practitioners also say negotiations between the government and the Health Apex have been slothful if anything in addressing the doctors concern.
“As the Apex negotiations have been ongoing, in good faith we have soldiered on and tried our best to report for duty consistently as ours is an essential service, but unfortunately all our resources have now been exhausted whilst nothing substantial has yielded from the Health Service Bipartite negotiations which have gone on for months now,” Magombeyi said.