TODAY welcomes the news that after over a month-long strike doctors have resolved to go back to work. The news is gratifying because it will enable patients who were receiving treatment at government hospitals to go back. But more importantly the development will enable those in the lower income bracket to go for medical services at government hospitals where it is relatively cheaper compared to private hospitals.
WE understand that the strike was called off after a ruling by the National Labour Commission (NLC) to the effect that ?members of the Ghana Medical Association [GMA] are entitled to their conversion difference, and that government and Fair Wages for that matter, should look at some payment plan that the GMA had brought up and then negotiate on just the payment terms and report back to the Labour Commission within a month.?
ALTHOUGH the doctors have suspended their industrial action they have also asked the NLC to enforce its ruling if government decides not to abide by this particular directive. We hope now that the matter has been resolved the parties involved, especially government, will abide by the ruling and fulfil its part of the ruling.
WE were all witnesses to how the strike dragged on because of entrenched positions taken by the parties involved (doctors and government) and how we the citizenry had to bear the brunt. Only God knows how many deaths occurred within the strike period. At least we can say the doctors took that posture because of their past experiences with government.
HOWEVER, now that a kind of solution appears to have been found to the impasse we hope Ghanaians will not wake up to hear the news again that doctors have embarked on strike. Critically we at Today have a few worries so far as the calling off of the doctors? strike is concerned. It appears that the calling off came with some conditions and when not met could have dire consequences on us as a people.
WE want to make the point clear that health is wealth and therefore some of these issues must be resolved with dispatch.