Medical activities were paralysed on Wednesday at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital following the ongoing nationwide strike embarked upon by medical and health workers.
The union members at UITH did not initially participate in the strike which started on September 18, following several appeals made to them by the hospital’s management.
The workers’ action followed a circular issued by the Minister of Health, Onyebuchi Chukwu, instituting a new directive on the skipping of the Consolidated Health Salary Structure (CONHESS) 10.
The usually busy wards and out-patient department were devoid of activities, due to the strike.
A resident doctor, who pleaded anonymity, said that many of the patients had been discharged while others were being attended to by doctors.
He also said the number of those on admission in the hospital had reduced since the strike commenced from more than 400 to less than 50 patients daily.
The Chairman, Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives and a member of the Joint Action Committee, Baba Olowo, confirmed that his members had joined the strike.
Mr Olowo said though the management had been holding meetings with the committee on how to keep the hospital operational, the situation was beyond the workers’ control.
He appealed to the Federal Ministry of Health to address the issues raised by the striking workers and save residents the ordeals of the strike.
Mr Olowo said that the workers went on strike because the ministry was not ready to keep to the agreement reached with the union in respect of the skipping of CONHESS 10.
Oba Hassan-Kadiri, the spokesman of the hospital, said that the strike was precipitated by many problems.
He, however, said resident doctors and consultants were still on ground to attend to the patients as they did not join the strike.
“The hospital is not paralysed because as you know, we are dealing with human beings and we have doctors and consultants at their duty posts,” he said.