Residents of Kaduna on Wednesday appealed for an end to the ongoing nationwide strike by resident doctors in the interest of humanity.
The residents said in separate interviews with newsmen that the strike would lead to avoidable loss of lives and impose more hardship on the poor in accessing health services.
Mrs Regina Simon, a civil servant, said: “the strike has disrupted health services and exposed most Nigerians to untold hardship.
“ They should call off the strike in the interest of Nigerians who are innocently dying because of the ongoing strike.
“I am appealing to all the striking doctors and government to resolve all issues so that they resume work to save the health sector from collapse.”
Mohammed Ibn-Kaldun, a patient, described the strike action as unfortunate adding that the doctors should have a rethink and come back to work.
Ibn-Kaldun said although the doctors have the right to go on strike, but they should consider the negative effect of their action on the health of the people especially those in need of critical medical attention.
“There are ways the doctors can express their grievances but going on strike is not the best; I was in the hospital but didn’t get proper attention.
“I hope their meeting with federal government will yield positive results so that they can come back and attend to their patients.
“If the strike continues, definitely the health sector will collapse and this is uncalled for,” he added.
Peter John, who was at the Neuro-Psychiatry hospital, Kaduna, called on the federal government and doctors to resolve the issues between them promptly for the benefit of the health sector and Nigeria.
“As you can see the people are deserting the hospital,” he said, adding that lasting solutions must be found to end the spate of strikes in the health sector.
Newsmen report that the strike has crippled activities in all public hospitals in Kaduna State forcing patients to seek alternative means of getting cure for their ailments.
A visit to the Federal Neuro- Psychiatric Hospital, National Eye Centre and National Ear Care Centre in Kaduna revealed that the hospitals had been deserted by patients, with only consultants and nurses offering skeletal services.
At the National Ear Care Centre, the spokesman of the hospital, Zubairu Muktar said adhoc arrangements have been made by the management to offer critical services.
“In our institution we have different group of doctors, apart from the resident doctors we have the consultants and they are the ones taking care of the patients.
“In the absence of resident doctors the consultants are there but will not be able to cope due to the volume of patients and activities in the hospital,’’ he said.
According to him, the emergency and in-patient units are still functional and offering skeletal services.
“ I am appealing to all the striking doctors and government to resolve all the issues so that they can resume work to save the health sector from collapse,’’ Muktar said.