The National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives has said its members will begin a three-day warning strike on Monday.
The Chairman of the Lagos State Council of NANNM, Mr Olurotimi Awojide, on Friday said the warning strike was to protest against poor remuneration and working conditions in the Lagos health sector.
Awojide said, “Nurses will no longer bear the burden of a poorly-resourced health care system. We implore the public to see this strike as a struggle for improved care for them and also as a fight to ensure that the healthcare sector is in a better position to serve them.
“All the requests we have made from the state government are to ensure that more nurses are not driven into frustration that can lead them to leaving the service.’’
He said the NANNM’s state executive council on December 29, 2021, assessed the numerous challenges of nurses and all unresolved issues before the government.
“The association had engaged the government on several occasions on these issues without the desired pace of outcome. In our estimation, the state government has yet to fully come to terms with how incredibly challenging the situation in the health sector has been for our members, especially since 2020,’’ he said.
Awojide noted that the continued migration of nurses to foreign countries had led to an acute shortage in the staffing of health facilities.
According to him, 496 nurses left the service of the State Health Service Commission from 2019 to 2021, with less than 15 per cent arising from statutory retirement.
“For context, the commission has only about 2,350 nurses. More than 200 nurses left the service of Lagos State University Teaching Hospital within the same period.
“Over 80 have left the Primary Healthcare Board from 2020 till date, thus leaving the health care with 700 nurses and midwives,’’ Awojide said.
He added that the executive council of the association would determine the next line of action at the expiration of the three-day warning strike.