Turmoil in Zimbabwean hospitals as nurses down tools

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GOVERNMENT-EMPLOYED nurses have stopped taking night duties declaring incapacitation and negligence by their employer, putting lives of patients at risk.

Zimbabwe Nurses Association (ZINA) president Enoch Dongo confirmed to NewZimbabwe that the health workers could not report for night duty because they are getting only ZW$1 000 in allowances for night duties per month and wanted an upwards review.

“We are not taking up night duty because of poor pay. The government has turned ignorant and is paying nurses ZW$1 000 per month for night duties which is not enough for one to travel to and from work at night,” Dongo said.

“It is costly to travel at night both financially and psycho-socially and that is not being recognised by the government.”

Dongo added: “We are reminding the employer that these allowances are based on work done during odd hours with little compensation. We have families that need to be taken care of,. We leave toddlers at home under the supervision of nannies who also need salaries at the end of the month and I am getting ZW$1 000 which is not worth the risk of travelling and working at night.”

Contacted for a comment, permanent secretary in the Health Ministry Jasper Chimedza referred NewZimbabwe to the Health Services Board (HSB), which is the employer.

However, efforts to reach the HSB were fruitless.

— NewZimbabwe


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