The Kenyan president has called on striking medical workers in public hospitals to halt their walk-out, citing the death of about 20 people since the start of the strike three days ago. All doctors and nurses in public hospitals across the country have been on strike since Monday over low salaries.
Uhuru Kenyatta said on Wednesday the government was working to find a solution. The walk-out has put emergency cases at higher risk of death as private health care is unaffordable to most of the Kenyans. Kenyan patients were turned away from hospitals and sick people left stranded in their wards.
Kenya’s medical workers have complained for a decade about low wages and poor working conditions. Thousands of doctors have also taken jobs in other countries. Unions are calling for a pay rise of 300-percent for doctors and 25- to 40-percent for nurses that they say was agreed in a 2013 collective bargaining agreement but has not been implemented so far.