MIDWIVES in Harare polyclinics have joined the ongoing strike by fellow nurses posing a serious threat to maternal health.
The midwives yesterday joined the ongoing industrial action which was instigated by the nurses last Monday, citing incapacitation.
This stance by the nurses and midwives compounds the already dire state of affairs as doctors at government hospitals are on day 72 of industrial action also citing incapacitation.
Speaking to H-Metro, City Health director Dr Prosper Chonzi said the primary health care is heavily affected and if not dealt with, would lead to a disaster.
“The situation is still dire with maternal health being the most affected as the midwives joined the strike citing incapacitation.
“The absence of midwives leads to disaster as they are critical in the maternal health.
“The current state has also been worsened by nurses’ failure to make women book on time but rather deal with emergencies which is dangerous,” he said.
The nurses are demanding that their salaries of about $1 000 be reviewed taking into account the prevailing interbank rate.
Dr Chonzi said engagements are still in progress and hopefully they will be fruitful.
“The council is engaging the leadership of the nurses through their representative body the Zimbabwe Urban and Rural Council Nurses Workers Union (ZURCNWU) in trying to address the issue of incapacitation and hopefully it will be a fruitful one.
“However, I am happy that Mufakose and Highfield are fully functional,” he said.