Eastern Cape hospitals not affected by strike

Friday, May 29, 2009

Bhisho - Public hospitals in the Eastern Cape have not been affected by the doctor's strike thus far, the provincial Department of Health has said.

"It is business as usual," departmental spokesperson Sizwe Kupelo, told BuaNews on Friday.

This comes as thousands of doctors, who work in state hospitals and belong to the South African Medical Association (SAMA), have planned to hold protest marches in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape.

They are expected to hand over a memorandum to their respective provincial Health MECs.

The main grievances expected to be outlined in the memorandum include the delay in the implementation of the Occupation Specific Dispensation (OSD) and unconducive working conditions.

The union members are also demanding a 50 percent salary increment.

However, Mr Kupelo said that doctors had given them the assurance that only off-duty staff would participate in the march and that those who were on-duty would continue helping patients.

"We will apply the no work no pay principle to those who take part in the strike while they're supposed to be on duty," he warned.