Now a section of nurses to strike in ten days

by Dilanthi Jayamanne

The Government Nursing Officers’ Association (GNOA) yesterday warned they would strike in ten days if the Health Ministry failed to give approval for clinical practices for nurses following midwifery and mental health care training.

President of the GNOA, Saman Ratnapriya, said that Visiting Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (VOGs) and doctors of the Kandy, Kurunegala and Mahamodara Teaching Hospitals had refused to provide clinical practice to nurses undergoing midwifery training. The issue had been aggravated with the authorities of Angoda Mental Health Institute (MHI) refusing to permit clinical training in psychiatric care to nurses.

Ratnapriya blamed the Health Ministry for not informing the directors of those hospitals of the training requirements of nurses. The Health Secretary had already given his written approval for the training to be provided on March, 31 but the ministry should inform the hospital directors of the decision in writing, he said.

The GNOA President said that the nurses of the 2009 batch were being given midwifery training.

However, the Director of the Angoda MHI, Dr. Jayan Mendis, contacted for comment, said that institution would not provide training unless the nurses came through proper channels with approval from the Health Secretary. The hospital should also be informed of the decision by the Deputy Director General Education and Training.

Meanwhile, the Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) has, with the concurrence of the College of VOGs, taken a ‘trade union and professional decision’ not to provide what it calls illegal midwifery training for nurses.

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