500 doctors reject pay rise

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As Kenyan doctors strike for pay rise, more than 500 Canadian doctors and residents have signed a public letter protesting their own pay raises, CNBC reported on Tuesday.

“We, Quebec doctors who believe in a strong public system, oppose the recent salary increases negotiated by our medical federations,” the letter says.

“A doctor in Canada is paid $260,924 (Sh26,433,036) per year on average,” CNBC quotes a September 2017 report from the Canadian Institute for Health Information.

The group, which included over 150 medical students, say they are offended that they would receive raises when nurses and patients are struggling.

“These increases are all the more shocking because our nurses, clerks and other professionals face very difficult working conditions.”

CNBC further quotes the doctors saying they won’t accept the raise “while patients live with the lack of access to required services.”

They cited drastic spending cuts in recent years and the centralisation of power in the Ministry of Health.

The letter, which was published February 25, says: “The only thing that seems to be immune to the cuts is our remuneration.”

“The 213 general practitioners, 184 specialists, 149 resident medical doctors and 162 medical students want the money used for their raises to be returned to the system instead,” CNBC adds.

The group is of the view that the resources can be redistributed to promote the health of the population and meet the needs of patients without pushing workers to the end.

“This is total gross pay, however, and does not take into account overhead each doctor pays to operate,” CNBC adds.

The situation is different from Kenya whose doctors went on strike for over three months demanding salary raise last year.

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