Tuesday, 23 July

Nursing and midwifery trainees decry unpaid allawa and financial burdens

Health News
Nursing and midwivery trainees

The Coalition of Concerned Nurses and Midwives Trainees in Ghana has voiced disappointment over the government's failure to pay outstanding allowances, which has left hundreds of students in financial distress.

Despite assurances from Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, the coalition says the government still owes trainees a staggering 22 months of arrears.

Final-year students, who are currently completing their studies, according to them face significant financial difficulties, with more than one hundred students facing expulsion from exam halls across the country due to unpaid fees.

The Coalition highlighted the unfortunate and inexcusable situation where trainee nurses and midwives are now required to pay fees ranging from GHC 50.00 to GHC 150.00 for clinical charges before being allowed to undertake mandatory clinical experiences in public health facilities.

Shockingly, they said most hospitals have begun demanding cash payments from trainees for consumables like gloves, sanitizers, and pens, which were previously provided in kind. This new financial burden has pushed students to the brink, forcing them to choose between their education and basic needs. Trainees who cannot afford these amounts or consumables have been driven away, a situation they find untenable and unacceptable.

In a statement, the trainees asserted that they do not have the financial capacity to shoulder these extra charges and consumables since they provide their services to the nation free of charge, despite the various risks and infections they face. Additionally, they pointed out that the clinical attachment fee, a component of their bill, is always paid together with their fees. "This idea is not only alien but should not be entertained as it has impoverished trainees and their guardians," the statement said.

The Coalition urged the government to reconsider the proposed amount equivalent to 50% of the current trainee allowance to be paid to trainees as a Clinical Service Allowance, a proposal made on January 30, 2014, at a stakeholder forum. This proposal has yet to receive approval.

They called on the government, through the Ministry of Health, to fulfil its promise by sanctioning the payment of trainees’ allowances.

Furthermore, they urged the government to settle all outstanding allowances immediately, absorb the cost of consumables such as gloves, liquid soap, Savlon, nose masks, pens, and accommodations for trainees during their clinicals, and implement the long-proposed Clinical Risk Allowance.

Source: Classfmonline.com/Emmanuel Mensah