The series of strikes that have hit the health sector of the country are very worrying.
Doctors, pharmacists and psychiatric nurses early in the week, suspended their services to press home their demands for better conditions of service, while nurses and midwives who have not been paid since their appointment, have also served notice to government, of their intention to embark on strike.
The actions of the health workers is crippling the sector, and the Times views the situation as disastrous and, therefore, urges the authorities to intervene urgently, to restore normalcy to it.
Precious lives which cannot be replaced after the strikes, are being lost, and we want to appeal to the parties involved to go to the negotiating table for an amicable settlement of their grievances.
It is a fact that the health sector plays a crucial role in the development of any country and, therefore, requires maximum attention by successive governments.
While we believe that these striking health workers have a case as far as their working conditions are concerned, we equally feel that suspending their services is not the best option to seek redress of their demands.
We cannot imagine mental patients being left off the hook to roam the cities because of the strike by psychiatric nurses. The effect would be too devastating for the country to bear.
Similarly, if pharmacists in government health facilities continue to be on strike, the effect will be too much on patients who would have to rely on private pharmacies and drug stores for their medications, at very high cost.
While urging the government to take immediate steps to resolve the impasse, the Times appeals to the striking health workers, to give a human face to the sufferings of patients, and return to work.
For in such a crisis, it is the poor Ghanaians who suffer most, since they don’t have the means to seek medical attention at the private hospitals and clinics because of the high cost of treatment involved.
The prevailing condition now is not the best; consequently, we call on the Council of State, Parliament and other relevant bodies to intervene immediately, before the situation further deteriorates.
These strikes are becoming too many in the country, and we need to address them holistically.
And the time to do so is now!