Egypt's doctors strike in critical phase
The Egyptian doctors' strike is entering its "decisive week," the strike's general committee said Monday.
The doctors began an open-ended strike on 1 October to demand better working conditions and an increase in the healthcare budget.
The committee confirmed its commitment to abide by decisions of the Doctors' Syndicate's general assembly and to ignore decisions by the syndicate's leadership which is "simply against the strike."
The committee added that doctors would not examine patients in outsourced clinics or perform non-urgent surgeries, either paid or unpaid, and stressed that they would examine patients in emergency rooms for free.
The health ministry on Monday criticised Sunday's call by the committee for an escalation in strike action.
Doctors resumed their strike on Sunday after a three-day suspension.
The strike, which began on 1 October, was temporarily halted on Thursday in order to treat patients with chronic conditions.
The partial strike does not include university, police and army hospitals, or emergency rooms.
The strikers have been calling for 15 per cent of the state budget, instead of the current 5 per cent, to be allocated to health, an improvement in doctors' salaries, and an improvement in security at hospitals and medical centres which have been the target of recent attacks.
There are approximately 100,000 doctors working at state-run hospitals in Egypt.
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