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Health Workers Withdraw Services Despite Salary Increment

Health care workers in the country have withdrawn their services with immediate effect citing an unsustainable remuneration owing to the deteriorating economic situation.

In a letter to the Health Services Board (HSB) Chief Executive Officer, Ms Ruth Runyararo Kaseke the workers said they were withdrawing services until their demands are met.

“This letter serves to inform you that the health care workers as you might have witnessed have already taken matters into their hands and have withdrawn services. Therefore we would like to officially communicate as the Health Apex that health workers have withdrawn their services with immediate effect until our demands are met.” read the letter signed by representatives from health unions.

Health workers at Parirenyatwa Hospital yesterday staged a demonstration at the HSB offices after their June pay slips reflected a slash of their salaries.

A few hours later the Government announced a 50% salary increment and US dollar pegged allowances for the Civil service however, the workers continued their protest dismissing the increment.

In the letter the workers cite the bread basket index for a family of six as measured by the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe as unsustainable.

“The bread basket for a family of six as measured by the Consumer Council of Zimbabwe is now pegged at ZWL $8500.The current ZWL $3000 salaries can’t sustainably take care of the families of health care workers under the prevailing socio economic situation.

“The health care workers demand that salaries revert back to the 1st of October 2018 digits that were quoted in USD which is a stable currency that can store value of that salary. In that way pensions, savings, medical aids, funeral policies will continue to be eroded.” noted the workers

The withdrawal of services comes at a time the country is grappling with the Covid-19 pandemic further worsening the already crippled sector.

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