The Zimbabwe Nurses Association said its members had downed tools because there was no protective clothing and water in hospitals, apart from a demand for coronavirus allowance.
“Following our letter that was presented to our employer 48 hours ago, informing them to urgently attend to our demands as frontline workers, it seems our concerns are not getting the urgency it deserves,” the nurses said in a statement.
“So, in that regard, all nurses are withdrawing their services with immediate effect until there is genuine action taken by the employer. We will only get back to work once our concerns have been swiftly acted upon. No PPE, no work; no corona allowance, no work; no water, no work.”
The Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights yesterday said the position by the medical staff was justified and genuine by imploring authorities to act.
“Definitely, it is a necessary requirement because we have seen health workers in other countries being affected in their numbers so we cannot expose people by making them go on the frontline without protection so their request is genuine and is an issue that must be addressed as a matter of urgency,” the association’s secretary Norman Matara said.
Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights executive director Roselyn Hanzi wrote to Health and Child Care minister Obadiah Moyo demanding information and action on several issues, including ensuring availability of proper clothing for medical staff.
“We also need to know how many ‘Hazmat suits’ and N95 masks have been distributed in each district, provincial and central hospital to make sure our first line of defence, the health workers, are safe and have some adequate protection against COVID-19,” Hanzi wrote in a letter.
“Please provide us with further information on whether our health personnel have all now been adequately trained on managing patients with this COVID-19.”
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