Tom Baker, the president Uganda Medical Records & Health Informatics Professionals told URN that they have given government until January 3, 2020 to address their demands.
The strike has been called off until January,2020
records officers under their umbrella Uganda Medical Records & Health
Informatics Professionals-UMRHIP have called off their industrial action after
striking a compromise with the Health Ministry. The Medical records officers laid
down their tools on Sunday to protest poor pay.
The strike followed
the expiry of a month long ultimatum announced by the Medical records officers in September 2019 for the health ministry to
give them a pay rise. The records officers want government to increase their
pay as directed by President Yoweri Museveni.
However, David Asimwe Sega, the vice president Uganda Medical
Records & Health Informatics Professionals says that they decided to call
off the strike after receiving communication from the health ministry in regard
to their grievances.
permanent secretary and commissioner in charge of our field wrote to us and
informed us that they were addressing our demands. We decided to give them time," Asimwe
said. According to the leadership of Uganda Medical Records & Health
Informatics Professionals, they want the Health Ministry to enhance salary
increment across all cadres.
says following the enhancement of salaries for all medical workers during
the 2018/2019 financial year, they only received 19 percent increment that has
since stopped. "After the increase records assistants were earning Shillings
620,000 from Shillings 420,000 while records officers got Shillings 1.7 million
from Shillings 620,000. However, this money was only paid for two months and it
attempts to get it resolved by the Health Ministry have come out empty,"
Asimwe explained. Records from the association show that records officers in
five districts across the country are still earning the enhanced salary.
include the records officers in; Kampala working at KCCA health facilities,
Kitgum, Koboko, Kiboga and Wakiso districts. Tom Baker, the president Uganda Medical Records
& Health Informatics Professionals told URN that they have given government
until January 3, 2020 to address their demands.
told us that they were still engaging ministry management about our demands.
Striking is the last resort so we decided to give them time as they engage but
our demands still stand. If we don't hear from them by the end of December, we
shall go ahead with our strike as planned,"Baker said.
When URN visited Mulago National Referral Hospital,
the records office was open and functional. Simon Otim, an officer in the
records office, said they want government to recognize them for their
work. "We study hard to occupy these offices. For us to get to these offices
here one needs to have a bachelor in Medical Records & Health Informatics,
which is not easy," Otim said.
Paul Mbaka, the Commissioner in charge of the Division
for Health Information at the Health Ministry declined to comment on the matter
when contacted by URN. "I do not want to release any information about the
strike. I do not have the authority to do so," Mbaka said.