Doctors at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology Teaching Hospital, Ogbomoso, Oyo State, began industrial action on Monday over poor conditions of service.
In a statement, the hospital’s chapter of the Medical and Dental Association of Nigeria (MDCAN) announced the industrial action through its chairman, Ayobami Alabi and secretary, Taiwo Alatishe.
They stated that the decision was based on a congress resolution arrived at, at the expiration of an ultimatum earlier issued.
The chapter’s MDCAN declared that it had critically observed the situation in the hospital, and there was no definite assurance that issues in contention would soon be resolved either partly or wholly.
The association stated that it had made efforts to safeguard the hospital from total collapse and reposition it for better training, research, and services for which it was established.
It declared the continued non-payment of salaries of its members recently employed as unacceptable.
It also decried the “delay and difficulty in payment of 2016 to 2017 salary arrears by the management.”
It added that some of the other issues in contention were the shortage of manpower across the different cadres of doctors, including consultants, specialists across various fields, resident doctors, specialists in training and house officers.
“The persistent inability of hospital management to employ doctors and other staff hinged on the excuse of the paucity of funds, has led to failure in expanding the scope of training and services,’’ it stated.
It also decried the decadence in infrastructure, equipment and facilities, which it stated was making the hospital operate below the optimal standard expected of a teaching hospital.
It listed the poor conditions of service as the lack of basic facilities like offices for consultants and non-response from management despite years of appeals.
The withdrawal of service “is done to safeguard the hospital from total collapse and to reposition it for better training, research, and services for which it was established.
“The board of the hospital failed to respond appropriately and satisfactorily to all these challenges over the years despite our various engagements, tolerance and show of understanding.
“This treatment is anti-labour. It is also considered inhumane with the attending psychological and emotional trauma,’’ it stressed.
It noted that it was becoming impracticable for the hospital’s management to provide basic amenities for effective service delivery.
The MDCAN appealed to the public, traditional rulers, critical stakeholders and the state government to rescue the teaching hospital to reposition it for better output.