Lamu, KENYA: As the nationwide nurses strike enters its second day, the situation was weird at the Lamu County Hospital after patients snubbed the facility and instead opted for private facilities.
On Monday Lamu announced that they would not take part in the strike and have since continued with their normal duties at the various hospitals and dispensaries in the county.
However, in what seems like a new twist of events,no single patient had arrived at the King Fahad County hospital in Lamu island by 9am Tuesday morning, in what the medical staff suspect could be a situation of ‘self denial’ following what has been portrayed in the media concerning the strike.
Nurses at the hospital alluded that patients were afraid to come to the hospital for fear of being mishandled or abandoned, like has been the case in other counties where the media has shown patients abandoned and left alone in suffering as the strike took off.
Nurses who arrived early at the hospital were surprised that no patient had arrived at the facility by 9am which is very unusual since normally, there are long patient queues by 7am.
The nurses said they were ready attend to patients and appealed to the Lamu public to bring their patients to the hospital.
Nurses in Lamu are however accusing their county union leaders of abandoning them and failing to communicate clearly the state of things especially concerning the ongoing strike.
They said the officials had simply told them not to partake in the strike and had vanished shortly after that without any updates on the current situation.
“They can’t just tell us not to take part in the strike and disappear. We can’t go on like this. In as much as we haven’t joined the strike,that doesn’t mean they should hide in silence. They need to be closer to us now and update us on everything.Instead,no one is talking. We have been left at crossroads. They must come out and speak. We don’t want a situation of double standards,”said a nurse who spoke on condition of anonymity.