The government has frozen the hiring of doctors with effect from next month. This is due to the fact that all available posts have been filled. At state institutions, new doctors can only be hired if there are promotions, resignations, retirements or deaths.
This has prompted the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors’ Association to petition the government to remove the third year of internship so that doctors can be given an open practising certificate which allows them to seek employment elsewhere. As things stand, when a doctor graduates from medical school, they have two years of internship. After those two years, the doctors will be given a limited practising certificate, and they have to do an additional year at a state institution in order to get an open practising certificate. But if the doctors are unable to get jobs at state institutions then it means that they will be unable to get employment elsewhere.
In their petition the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors’ Association said:
In light of the failure by Government to provide vacancies for the doctors who would have completed their internship, we the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors’ Association on behalf of our membership, are petitioning Government and other relevant institutions as required by Section 44 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe to respect, protect, promote and fulfil our members’ right to practice the profession by completely removing the third year in which a doctor operates with a limited practising certificate and start issuing an open practising certificate upon completion of internship.
Should the ministry of Health and every person (including the minister), and every institution and agency of government (in so far as the medical profession is concerned) fail to respect, protect, promote and fulfil the rights and freedoms of our members, by not taking heed of the petition within 14 days of receipt by the relevant offices, we shall not hesitate to take legal steps aimed at vindicating our members’ rights without further notice…