About 300 doctors and house officers used to be in employment at the hospital but said many of them had left the system.
The members of the Association of Resident Doctors (ARD) at the Federal Medical Centre, Owo, Ondo State, on Thursday embarked on a two-week warning strike over the dearth of personnel in the hospital.
The doctors who commenced the warning strike after the association’s general meeting shut down services at the hospital after the Association’s General Meeting (AGM) in Owo, Owo local government area.
The doctors asserted that the strike action was inevitable saying members had been working “under dire stressful conditions.”
The President of the Owo FMC ARD, Dr Olutobi Gideon Olaopa, lamented that only 80 Resident Doctors and Health Officers were currently in employment at the hospital, while no employment had been carried out in the hospital in the last four years.
He said, about 300 doctors and house officers used to be in employment at the hospital but said many of them had left the system.
“But now one person is doing the job of five persons. We have been on this issue since last year. The situation keeps getting worse because a lot of people are leaving the system.
“There has not been any employment in the FMC Owo, since 2018. The employment of additional 200 doctors and health officers will solve the problem. They are also not paying for our extra work. We are doing duty calls every day,” Olaopa said.
The doctors in a communique signed at the end of its meeting raised other issues including poor quality of meals served to them, lack of befitting and secured accommodation for their colleagues working at the hospital’s annexes in Akure.
It reads; “We implore the management and all relevant offices of the Federal Government to ensure the employment of the resident doctors and House officers to the hospital to relieve the severe shortage of manpower and overwhelming workload being faced by our members in the hospital.
“That the Association can no longer bear the burnouts being experienced by its members and requests that recruitment of resident doctors and House Officers be commenced in earnest.
“The management should provide a befitting accommodation fortified with requisite amenities for those currently being posted to Akure Annex and that the association executives should certify the standard of accommodation before acceptance.”
However, the Public Relations Officer of the hospital, Olufunsho Ijanusi, who confirmed the industrial action, said the management of the hospital is on top of the situation.
He said the Chief Medical Director of the hospital, Dr Liasu Adeagbo, has just returned from Abuja and had a meeting with the leadership of the ARD appealing to them to exercise patience.
Ijanusi explained that there were lots of bureaucratic bottlenecks causing delays in the employment of more hands in the hospital but assured that the management would soon find a lasting solution to the challenge.