Agenzia Fides

Catholic bishops in Kenya have for a second time appealed to the striking doctors in the country to resume essential medical duties especially regarding patients in danger of life and those who need urgent care.

The medical staff working in public health facilities been on strike since 5th December. The protest is causing untold suffering to patients and, according to news sent to Agenzia Fides, dozens of people have died for lack of care. The bishops had already addressed an urgent appeal to health workers so that they guarantee essential services to save lives.

In a statement sent to Agenzia Fides, Monsignor Philip Anyolo, Bishop of Homabay and president of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB), expressed the church's concern for the suffering caused by the strike and thanked the staff of public and private health facilities who, despite everything, continue to respond to medical emergencies.

"We know you continue to be overstretched and overworked to a point of burn outs", the statement said. "We also thank the private and non-state medical Institutions that continue to go out of their way to respond to medical emergencies and help save lives despite the pressure on your resources, especially when the affected cannot afford to pay their medical bills in full".

The bishops addressed an urgent appeal to the government, trade unions and workers to "make decisions and take actions that ensure normal medical services are restored without further delay".