The Health Services Workers’ Union (HSWU) has called on the Fair Wages and Salary Commission (FWSC) and government to review the Single Spine Pay Policy to include ’emotional effort’ to boost enthusiasm in the placement of health workers.
The Union said ’emotional effort’ is a vital factor which was part of the Health Sector Salary Structure (HSSS) but was not included in the Single Spine Salary Structure (SSSS).
Mr Reynolds O. Tenkorang, General Secretary of HSWU, who said this at a press conference, said the removal of that item has negatively affected the placement of health workers.
He said: ‘in the Union’s view, a labourer in the health sector, if the above factor is included, would be placed higher on the SSSS.
‘Again, the situation where a Health Sector Workforce has been divided into so-called Clinical and non-Clinical should be abolished since it is a disincentive and is causing staff disenchantment,’ he said.
The General Secretary also called for a return to the payment of annual increments, provided there is no adverse report against the worker.
Mr Tenkorang said since 2006 when the Health Sector Salary Structure came into effect, health workers have not benefitted from annual salary increments due them and this was affecting their income.
The press conference coincided with the closing of the second Trainers-of-Trainers Seminar for Union members across the country.
In all, 40 members were trained to propagate the activities of the Union and also send the message down to the structures at the various levels.
Mr Tenkorang urged the participants to share the experience they have acquired with the structures to eliminate rumours, ignorance and suspicion among members.
On payment of salary arrears, the General Secretary, called on the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Health, Fair Wages and Salaries Commission, and all Public Health Sector Employers to ensure that the salary arrears payments correspond with the effective date of promotions.
Touching on unemployment of Graduate Health Workers, he said a look at health worker-patient ratio indicates that more health workers are needed to render quality health services to the citizenry.
He said every year, the health training institutions churn out thousands of graduates to meet societal needs, ‘but in recent times what has become the norm is that these graduates remain unemployed for several years without knowing when they will enter the job market to bridge the yawning unemployment gap’.
‘The HSWU wishes to lend its support to the Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association and other concerned citizens in calling for the immediate employment of all affected graduates, since their state of unemployment, is unreasonable,’ he said.
The HSWU membership includes all paramedics in the health sector, excluding doctors, nurses, midwives and pharmacists.
The membership is covered by the Collective Agreement between the health agencies and facilities under the Ministry of Health and the Health Services Workers’ Union of TUC (Ghana).