2017/2018 Batch of Allied Health Professionals withdraw from COVID-19 contact tracing, testing

2017/2018 Batch of Allied Health Professionals withdraw from COVID-19 contact tracing, testing

Members of the Coalition of Graduate Unemployed Allied Health professionals (COAHP) for the 2017/2018 batch have withdrawn their services of voluntarily helping the COVID-19 teams with contact tracing, sample taking and testing nationwide.

The withdrawal of their services takes effect from April 13, 2020.

“The leadership of the Coalition of Graduate Unemployed Allied Health Professionals (COAHP 2017 and 2018 batch, wishes to inform the general public that, effective 13th April 2020, all members who volunteered to do contact tracing, sample taking and testing nationwide have withdrawn their services in the COVID-19 teams”, they noted.

Last week, the Coalition threatened to discontinue the exercise and demanded permanent employment from the government.

In a statement signed by the leadership of the coalition to announce their withdrawal, they said “Our action is influenced by the neglect and unfair treatment meted out to the 2017/2018 batch of Allied Health Professionals by the ministry of health. We will like to state equivocally that, this group of Allied Health Professionals has met all the requirements that qualify them to be recruited into the health services.”

According to the group, the government has discriminated against them after recruiting the 2017 batch of nurses and midwives while excluding the Allied Health Professionals of the same year group.

“We have had several engagements with the Ministry of Health and our names were submitted with our colleagues (2017 Diploma Nurses) to the Ministry of Finance for financial clearance. Follow-ups were done to this effect and the Ministry of Health promised us that, latest by March, our financial clearance will be granted, we thereby could not fathom why only that of nurses was granted leaving out Allied Health Professionals, “the statement indicated.

The coalition which comprises 3, 797 members had 1,855 members engaged in the voluntary contact tracing and testing.

What is the Coalition’s further measure to ensure their demands are met?

While urging its members to remain calm, the coalition said it will consider a peaceful protest within the laid down procedures to ensure their demands are met.

Portions of the statement urged the public to be wary of persons who will disguise themselves as Allied Health Professionals to do contact tracing, sample taking, and testing.

“We urge all our members nationwide to be calm as we are seriously considering their agitation to demonstrate peacefully in accordance with laid down procedures.  We demand solidarity and follow up action to ensure our demands are met,” the statement noted.