The management of the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Teaching Hospital, Bauchi, says it has stopped all non-emergency surgeries pending the suspension of the strike embarked by the resident doctors in the country.
Dr Saidu Kadas, Chairman Medical Advisory Committee, CMAC, of the facility, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Bauchi.
Mr Kadas said the hospital has devised a means to attend to emergencies in its various units such as the Trauma Centre, Delivery suit, Emergency Maternity, Intensive Care Unit, ICU, and Pediatric emergency.
He said that the units were attending to patients to mitigate the effects of the nationwide strike.
The CMAC said that the authorities were doing their best towards resolving the situation, adding that Federal Government was making efforts towards addressing the problem.
Also commenting, Dr Mohammed Algazali, President, Resident Doctors Association (NARD), said the strike was necessitated by the inability of the government to implement its agreement with the association.
Mr Algarzali said that among other things contained in the agreement were the issue of migration of resident doctors into Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS).
This, he said, resulted to the removal of officer’s salary from the scheme of service and delayed payment.
“Another reason for the strike was nonpayment of 2014 and 2015 arrears of the National Minimum Wage.
“Other factors are the delay payment of the Medical Residency Training Fund (MRTF), non-payment of the Death in Service Benefits (DSB) of the affected doctors to their families.
“Only one of the 19 doctors who deserve to benefit from DSB was paid.
“Other reasons for the action are poor emoluments, infrastructure and insecurity in some of our hospitals and non-review of hazard allowance,” he said.
According to him, medical services at the ATBU Hospital are being manned by members of the Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria, MDCAN, as 150 resident doctors joined the strike.
A NAN correspondent who monitored the strike reports that nurses and Consultant Physicians were providing skeletal services at the hospital.
Amina Shehu, a patient relative, said the strike had affected healthcare service delivery and urged the authorities to resolve the industrial crisis to enable them get access to quality medical care.