South Sudan Doctors’ Union calls for better salary and working conditions
The South Sudan Doctors’ Union (SSDU) have used their Labour Day statement to call for improvements to health professionals’ salaries and working conditions.
The SSDU hailss the country’s medical professionals as ‘some of the most compassionate, hardworking and dedicated people we know’, and notes the struggles of South Sudan’s health system with civil rest, ebola and COVID-19 in recent years.
In light of this, they have urged the government to review issues related to shortage of doctors, burnout and wellness, employee recruitment and retention as well as payment.
On salary, the SSDU ‘reiterate our call to the Ministries of Health, Labour and Public Services to revise and adjust salary scale for all health professionals in both public and private sector’.
The statement also calls for the government to increase the national health budget allocation to 15%, as per the Abuja Declaration.
A male ward at Juba teaching hospital, South Sudan’s primary care facility.
Such comes amidst rising problems associated with South Sudan’s medical infrastructure, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The SSDU have pointed out numerous hospitals working without oxygen or blood transfusion services, critically underfunded medical schools and doctors having no control over their working environments.
The SSDU end the statement with an appeal to NGOs and international organisations to provide equal employment opportunities for medical personnel, and to focus on improving the working conditions of those already employed.
‘To our government and citizens, on this Labor Day, please take a moment to thank your doctor for serving in one of the most difficult jobs in South Sudan, while they work hard to preserve and repair our health.
It is recognition that is often overlooked, and definitely overdue’, the SSDU conclude.