Two nurses unions continue strike at K’gala Teaching Hospital

By Dilanthi Jayamanne 

The Government Nursing Officers’ Association (GNOA) yesterday warned that the strike at the Kurunegala Teaching Hospital would continue despite its decision to call off the strike as the midwives in the hospital continued to sign in a separate register.

GNOA President Saman Ratnapriya said the Health Ministry had authorised midwives to sign in another register whereas they usually signed in the same register as the nurses. He said that steps had not been taken to annul the instructions.

The GNOA was joined by the JVP affiliated All Ceylon Nurses Union at the Kurunegala Teaching Hospital demanding annulment of the Ministry authorisation.

Meanwhile, Public Service United Nurses Union (PSUNU) and the GNOA temporarily suspended their strike on Monday and Tuesday while the former gave the Health Ministry one week to settle the nurses’ midwifery training issue.

The PSUNU warned they would withdraw from all administrative work including signing in a diary rather than the nurses register. They maintained that the GMOA President and its spokesman had underestimated the services of the nurses and so the union decided to refrain from accompanying doctors on ward rounds as a part of its protest.

However, Director of the National Hospital, Dr. Anil Jasinghe, contacted for commend, said that all nurses of the hospital had reported for duty, while the hospital administration would have to see if PSUNU members had carried out their threat.

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