Sharjah hospital staff quiz new bosses over pay rises

Staff were promised extra pay by the hospital's previous administration, which they say they need to cope with the rising cost of living.

Powered by automated translation

SHARJAH // Medical staff at the University Hospital Sharjah have pleaded with their new management for pay increases to help them to meet the rising cost of living.

The workers were introduced to the management team in an open question and answer session on Monday.

It was announced that the hospital would be co-managed by the Sharjah Health Authority (SHA) but would still operate as a private entity. Previously it had been solely run by the hospital administration.

Many of the staff’s queries were about salary rises, especially as they had been promised extra pay by the previous administration.

Abdullah Al Mahyan, chairman of SHA and moderator for the session, said that after deliberations between staff and management an agreement would be reached that served everyone.

The issue of low pay in Northern Emirates government hospitals has been highlighted before.

In 2010, an FNC committee visited several hospitals in the Northern Emirates and found the migration of staff to the private sector was causing a chronic shortage in government health care.

Mr Al Mahyan told the session that the UHS was a private and independent hospital.

The high cost of health care in Sharjah and the hospital’s remote location were other issues raised.

“This impression is not correct and, in fact, if you consider us with similar hospitals we are much cheaper,” said Prof Hossam Hamdy, vice chancellor for the University of Sharjah’s medical and health college.

Prof Hamdy, also the centre’s chairman of the department of surgeons, said the hospital had some of the best facilities in the region and welcomed all community members.

The hospital was inaugurated in June 2011 by Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Ruler of Sharjah.

Since then, it has opened a breast-cancer treatment centre and a children’s diabetes clinic.

ykakande@thenational.ae