Poor conditions GMA threatens to resign en masse

The Ghana Medical Association has asked government to improve conditions of service for its members or will resign after June 30

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The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) says its members working in public health facilities across the country have resolved to resign unless Government backs a request for the establishment of a collective bargain agreement by the end of June.

The GMA will today hold a crucial emergency meeting to decide whether to embark on its planned mass resignation action on Wednesday, July 1, 2015.

Today’s meeting, to be held at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, is to decide on the next line of action after the June 30, 2015 deadline the doctors gave to the government.

The meeting comes after leaders of public sector health workers unions last Friday signed onto a framework that will guide them in negotiations for their conditions of service.

The framework was signed by the Minister of Health, Mr. Alex Segbefia, while Mr. Abu Kuntulo, the General Secretary of the Health Service Workers Union, signed on behalf of public sector health workers.

The ceremony was witnessed by representatives of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA), the Ghana Registered Nurses Association (GRNA), the Ghana Hospital Pharmacists Association and the Health Service Workers Union (HSWU).

The Association first issued the ultimatum in November 2014 when they set a June 30 ultimatum to the government to put together conditions of service for its members.

The Doctors met with employment and Labour Relations Minister Haruna Iddrisu on Wednesday April 7, 2014 to reiterate their point.

General Secretary of GMA Dr. Justice Yankson says the absence of a collective bargain agreement for the group was a violation of the labour law.

“We have gotten to a point where we say enough is enough", he said.

He said if the government delays beyond the June 30 deadline they would not have any option than to leave the consulting rooms of public health institutions.

 “We will resign and leave the health service to the ministry and its agencies to run the way want to run it because we think this is a big injustice”, he stressed.

He said doctors as a group of professionals in the country cannot continue to work under the current conditions if government as an employer refuses to provide appropriate conditions of service.

The association also expressed concern about why some newly graduated doctors were still not employed at a time when the country needs more doctors.

The doctors say they do not see why the graduate doctors should be at home when the government says there is no net freeze on employment in the health and education sectors.

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