Paidamoyo Chipunza, Harare Bureau
GOVERNMENT has reviewed health sector specific allowances by a further 40 percent from the initial 60 percent with effect from 1 October 2019.
This latest revision will see junior doctors pocketing $2 400 for on-call allowances up from $1 200 initially offered.
Nurses will also get $720 for either night duty, standby or callout allowances up from the previous $360. Nurse managers will also be getting $1 000 up from $500.
These allowances are in addition to other health sector specific allowances that include locum rates, initial uniform grant, initial uniform allowance, out of residence allowance and psychiatric allowances, which were reviewed last Friday, each by at least 100 percent.
Although the Health Services Board (HSB) could not immediately confirm the new take home salary for health workers, chairperson Dr Paulinus Sikhosana yesterday said this latest review brings the new adjustment on health specific allowances to 100 percent.
“Parties to the Health Services Bipartite Negotiating Panel (HSBNP) met on 18 October 2019 to continue the unfinished negotiations on the review of the Health Sector Specific Allowances following the signing of collective bargaining agreement (CBA) number 3 of 2019 on 4 October 2019.
“CBA 3 of 2019, provided for a 60 percent adjustment on the HSCA with effect from 01 October 2019.
“On 18 October 2019, parties to the HSBNP agreed that the said CBA 3 of 2019 be amended to provide for a review of the health sector specific allowances by a further 40 percent from 60 percent.
“This review is with effect from 1 October 2019,” said Dr Sikhosana.
However, defiant striking junior doctors snubbed the negotiating table arguing that they were no longer part of the Health Apex Council.
In an interview following the announcement of the latest agreement, acting Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association president Dr Tawanda Zvakada said they were still waiting to engage with the employer through a different platform, which is not the Health Apex Council.
“We did not participate in the negotiations and we still hope the employer will find ways of engaging us meaningfully with a credible intermediator since we are still open for dialogue. However, not through the Health Apex Council,” he said.
Dr Zvakada said doctors would continue withdrawing their labour until their grievances are addressed.
In September, Government awarded civil servants including health workers Cost of Living Adjustment of between 55 and 76 percent on a sliding scale.