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Patients at Central Darfur hospital abandoned

October 2 - 2015 ZALINGEI
A patient and his relatives at El Fasher Teaching Hospital (Albert González Farran/Unamid)
A patient and his relatives at El Fasher Teaching Hospital (Albert González Farran/Unamid)

The strike of medical staff has left the hospital in Zalingei abandoned, except for a number of unattended patients who lack the money and resources to travel to another hospital. Fearing reprisals by policemen, hospital workers have also abandoned the apartments which are accommodated by the hospital.

The staff protest since yesterday against the abuse of their colleagues by policemen inside the hospital in the capital of Central Darfur.

Patients in the hospital reported to Radio Dabanga that it was full, “but there is no one to receive the patients”. People have therefore taken patients to the hospitals in Nyala, El Geneina, and even Khartoum, or a private clinic in Zalingei. Patients with less money or without resources to travel have been forced to take refuge in houses of relatives, or are still in the hospital without being attended.

All staff have left the hospital, including the reception workers and cleaners, a patient said.

A medical source in the hospital revealed to Radio Dabanga that doctors have abandoned the nearby accommodation for medical staff because they fear reprisals. He explained that wealthier doctors work their shift in the hospital from morning until the afternoon and then continue their working day at a private clinic they own.

The source, who did not want his name and function to be mentioned, said that the medical staff have not yet received a response from the authorities on the memorandum they handed to the State Minister of Health yesterday. The memo demands the arrests of the violent policemen.

Police in three vehicles arrived at the hospital on Thursday morning, led by a captain and a lieutenant, with a colleague who had been injured in traffic. Doctors examined the wounded and established that his condition was good enough for him to return home. The policemen did not believe the doctors, and after a discussion started to beat and kick the doctors and other medical staff who intervened.

Two of the staff were taken to the police station, where they were beaten again. They were released on the same day.

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