Patients suffer in Kitui and Machakos as nurses join countrywide strike

Anthony Nderitu.

Patients in Machakos and Kitui County referral hospitals are suffering after nurses put down their tools on Monday to join a countrywide strike to protest poor payments. Most patients were left to their families, relatives and friends as no nurses are available.

Both Machakos and Kitui hospital management have requested patients to seek medical attention from private hospitals since they are understaffed.

Kitui referrals hospital medical superintendent Dr. J.N Mungai said no single nurse has returned to work. He pointed out that the work load is heaver since only doctors and clinical officers are present. Major county hospitals have remained deserted as doctors only attended to those in critical condition.

On Monday nurses took to the street of Machakos town protesting for poor pay. They want a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) signed between the Kenya union of nurses (KNUN) and council of governors (CoG) implemented. The salary and remuneration commission (SRC) rejected the agreement on Monday.

Speaking exclusively to a nurse at Machakos level five hospital through the phone, the source pointed out that they won’t go back to work unless SRC accepts the agreement.  She asked patients to seek other ways of medication for the time being.

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