Union: Decision to loan healthcare workers to schools 'careless'

Union: Decision to loan healthcare workers to schools 'careless'

The Health & Other Services Personnel Trade Union of South Africa (Hospersa) wants health authorities in KwaZulu-Natal to withdraw its plan to deploy thousands of healthcare workers to schools - to help with COVID-19 screening and testing.

Nurse holds a swab for the coronavirus / covid19 test stock photo

The healthcare sector union says the provincial health department made the decision without consulting them.

The department is planning to deploy 10 000 community healthcare workers to schools to assist the Education Department to manage the processes to limit the spread of the coronavirus when pupils go back to school on Monday.

Hospersa's Kevin Halama says community healthcare workers should be fully absorbed into the public health sector - and not be loaned out to other departments.

READ: Economist forecasts further contraction to SA economy

"As a recognised union representative of many healthcare workers in the province, we are disturbed that the provincial government has made the loan announcement without due consultation with labour. 

"Our members have been at the cold face of this pandemic, carrying out much needed home-based care services to many vulnerable communities without recognition and employment benefits. This decision to loan them out like a cheap commodity is careless."

Missed a Newswatch bulletin

Show's Stories