Nurses will ground all hospitals
MBABANE - Nurses have threatened to bring all health institutions to a halt unless government resolves the impasse at the TB hospital.
The striking nurses said all the country’s hospitals and clinics will be grounded if the ministry of health does not attend to their grievances.
The nurses alleged that some employees of the hospital had died owing to exposure to the deadly Multi Drug Resistant tuberculosis at Moneni TB hospital.
The Swaziland Democratic Nurses Union (SWADNU) and the National Public Service and Allied Workers Union (NAPSAWU) delivered a petition to the Principal Secretary (PS) in the Ministry of Health Steven Shongwe.
Leading the nurses was NAPSAWU President, Quinton Dlamini and SWADNU President Bheki Mamba.
The petition was accepted by Undersecretary at the ministry Sikelela Dlamini.
"We the employees at the TB hospital have observed with dismay the lies, deceit, and dishonesty by your office in so far as addressing our plight at the TB hospital. As we speak, a number of us have perished and we don’t know how many are in line," reads the petition in part.
The nurses said their situation was unbearable. They told the PS to keep the court order and they would keep their lives.
The petition called on the PS’ office to refurbish the hospital so that it is suitable to handle all forms of TB including the much dreaded MDR and XDR.
In an earlier interview the PS had said government was willing to engage the nurses with a view to find lasting solutions to the problems.
He said what was of importance were the lives of the 62 patients who were admitted to the TB hospital but also acknowledged that they would do all they could to ensure that the health care workers were not exposed to health hazardous conditions.
...three kombi conductors die of MDR-TB
MBABANE - So serious is the rate of MDR-TB that three kombi conductors have allegedlly died in Moneni where the TB hospital is situated.
This was alleged by National Public Service and Allied Workers Union (NAPSAWU) President Quinton Dlamini in an interview with this publication yesterday.
This was during the nurses’ march to the ministry of health to demand that the TB hospital be refurbished so that employees’ lives are not at risk as was the case.
He said the kombis were servicing the Moneni-Manzini route.
Dlamini said this development has made kombi drivers to shun the TB hospital stuff when they want to board public transport.
"Kombis no longer allow the TB hospital staff to board their vehicles in fear of infection," the NAPSAWU president said.
Dlamini said employees of the hospital were dying at an appalling rate. He said urgent action was needed to save the lives of the staff.
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