- A mass strike in Lagos state hospitals yesterday has left patients stranded after the Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris, asked doctors planning to embark on strike to resign their appointments.
Reports said patients in most state government hospitals were left unattended as group of Lagos State Medical Guild went on strike, while in other hospitals patients were attended by hospital consultants and heads of department.
The Commissioner accused some health workers who opted to go on strike of politicising the strike and fueling disunity within medicals doctors, which he has said it was not ideal for the medical profession.
Dr Idris said that there was a split among members of the guild as well as the members of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) which according to him was a clear indication that not all the members of both groups were interested in the strike.
"The government would not succumb to any threat or intimidation from the doctors," he said stating that the government was looking into grievances of the medical profession in the country.
President of the Association of Resident Doctors, Dr Gbolahan Lasisi said the administrative doctors could only give appointments to patients but not admit patients into health centres.
Local newspaper, THISDAY quoted Dr Lasisi saying: "We will see how long the consultants and administrative staff can go without other doctors, the Medical Guild gave the state government 21 days for negotiation which they failed to do."
Reports said about 2 pm yesterday, the administrative doctors had stopped working, claiming that they were tired.
However, members of Association of General and Private Medical Practitioners of Nigeria (AGPMPN), Lagos State branch, have dissociated themselves from the strike and appealed to the striking group to call it off immediately according to local reports.
The association's chairman of the branch, Dr Anthony Omolola, said primary calling of doctors is to safeguard lives, calling on those on strike to resume duties also appealing on doctors to exhaust all avenues in resolving the matter.
"The association is aware of Health Reforms going on in the state which it hoped would impact positively on the citizens of the state," he said, stating that in the process of implementing the reforms, the association is aware that some challenges will emerge.
The Medical Guild had given the government a 21-day ultimatum, asking the state government to meet some of their demands else they would embark on an indefinite strike.
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