Govt acts on doctors’ job challenges

Source: Govt acts on doctors’ job challenges | The Herald January 25, 2017

Paidamoyo Chipunza: Senior Reporter

Government is planning to trade in posts for Government Medical Officers (GMOs) with already established posts for specialist doctors in provincial hospitals to address employment challenges for junior doctors coming from medical school, secretary in the Ministry of Health and Child Care Dr Gerald Gwinji has said.Responding to questions from The Herald on doctors’ posts which are now exhausted, Dr Gwinji said Government was unlikely to fill up the specialist posts in the next coming years, hence the option to fill the posts with GMOs.

“In the short term we are going to trade in several provincial specialist posts for this challenge because we are unlikely to fill all these specialist posts in the coming four to five years due to the time it takes to train them,” said Dr Gwinji.

Information gathered by The Herald showed that one post for a specialist doctor is equal to two and a half posts for GMOs. This means Government can employ five GMOs on two specialist posts. However, The Herald could not immediately establish how many vacant specialist posts are available at the moment.

Dr Gwinji said in the long term, Government continues to push for the upward review of staff establishments in public health institutions.

“In the medium to long term we will push for the long overdue and much needed establishment expansion,” he said.

Recently, Government announced that it was no longer able to employ doctors after completion of their internship, a position the doctors have since responded to by demanding their practice certificates to enable them seek employment elsewhere.

The Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association president Dr Farai Munatsi said all was well if Government guaranteed their employment after completion of their internship.