UUTH: WORKERS’ DAY CELEBRATION MESSAGE BY CONGLOMERATION OF HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS IN AKWA IBOM.
The workers day celebration is a yearly global celebration to mark the contributions of the organized labor in the development, strength and well being of the country.
The conglomeration of healthcare Professionals, Akwa Ibom State will align herself with the United Nations theme for the world day for safety and health at work 2020 which is “ stop the pandemic”. There is no theme that best suits this time than this. It is a clarion call on all healthcare workers to rise above the hazards and harassment at the place of work and in the course of providing services to combat COVID-19.
We therefore salute all healthcare workers in Akwa Ibom State for their courage and commitment in fighting the corona virus pandemic even at the risks of their lives.
As we mark this day , our emphasis will be on the prevention of acquiring diseases at the work place.
The 5 index cases of COVID-19 were predominantly healthcare workers who were exposed to the virus in the line of duty.
We want to commend the heroic efforts of the health workers who are not deterred from providing services despite this hazard.
The conglomerate will want to observe that during this pandemic and lockdown, there has been cases of harassment and assault of healthcare workers on essential duties by men of the Nigeria Police Force.
A medical doctor suffered fractures as a result of assault by a police officer. Other healthcare workers have been variously harassed, assaulted and denied passage to their places of essential duties including the NMA chairman.
The recent one is the assault on a nurse by men of the Nigeria Police Force at the UUTH for no justifiable reason. She was beaten to pulp; dragged from the first floor to the ground floor; her uniform (symbol of office and service) was torn and her pride as a woman violated. This action had left her traumatized physically, emotionally, mentally and professionally and her dignity as a health worker despised.
Hence , we demand an apology from the NPF to her and the healthcare professionals for this harassment and assault and to compensate her adequately for this unwarranted attack despite the fact that she provided care to best of her professional ability to a patient who was brought in unconscious.
We make bold to say that if there’s a failure to meet this demand and a failure to stop henceforth this incessant harassments and assaults, we will not hesitate to withdraw all healthcare services in the state.
The conglomerate also notes that redeployment or transfer is an administrative tool to improve service delivery but we frown at and condemn strongly when this is done punitively to a worker who is carrying out his job prescription as in the case of recent redeployment of the state epidemiologist.
We consider this ill timed and the circumstances surrounding this redeployment not justifiable as we know you can not remove a general in the heat of war (covid-19 pandemic).
Finally we call on all health workers to continue their selfless services in combating this pandemic while being safe and to prevent themselves from hazards at workplace.
God bless healthcare workers.
God bless Akwa Ibom State.
Our Profession Our Dignity!
Happy Workers Day!
Dr Akwaowoh Akpabio, CHAIRMAN, Pharmaceutical Society Of Nigeria (PSN)
Dr Nsikak Nyoyoko, CHAIRMAN, Nigerian Medical Association ( NMA)
Comr Patrick Odu, CHAIRMAN, National Association Of Nigerian Nurses And Midwives( NANNM)
Comr Emilia Eleazar, Chairman , Association Of Medical Laboratory Scientists Of Nigeria (AMLSN)