AFRICA/KENYA - New Bishops' appeal to save lives - medical staff on strike for more than a month

Monday, 16 January 2017 healthcare   bishops  

Nairobi (Agenzia Fides) - The Catholic Bishops of Kenya, once again appeal to the striking doctors to resume essential medical duties especially regarding patients in danger of life and those who need urgent care. The medical staff working in public health facilities have in fact been on strike since 5 December. The protest is causing untold suffering to patients and, according to news sent to Agenzia Fides, dozens of people have died for lack of care. The Bishops had already addressed an urgent appeal to health workers so that they guarantee essential services to save lives (see Fides 09/12/2016).
In a statement sent to Agenzia Fides, His Exc. Mgr. Philip Anyolo, Bishop of Homabay and President of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB), expressed the Church's concern for the suffering caused by the strike. Mgr. Anyolo thanked the staff of public and private health facilities who, despite everything, continues to respond to medical emergencies. "We know you continue to be overstretched and overworked to a point of burn outs", the statement said. "We also thank the private and non-state medical Institutions that continue to go out of their way to respond to medical emergencies and help save lives despite the pressure on your resources, especially when the affected cannot afford to pay their medical bills in full".
The Bishops addressed an urgent appeal to the government, trade unions and workers to "make decisions and take actions that ensure normal medical services are restored without further delay". (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 16/01/2017)