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Doctors in public hospitals start partial strike

Jan. 16, 2014 2:48 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 17, 2014 11:42 A.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Doctors in public hospitals in the occupied West Bank have started partial strike action against what they describe as "abusive practices" by the Palestinian Authority Ministry of Health.

Head of the doctors' union, Shawqi Sabha, told Ma'an that outpatient services and scheduled surgeries will be suspended in all public hospitals until the ministry complies with the union's demands.

The protests were sparked by a recent ministry decision to transfer several doctors to different work locations in order to implement a 2013 decision banning doctors from running private clinics, Sabha said.

He highlighted that doctors would in submit collective resignations as the ministry "continues with its abusive practices."

The decision on private clinics, he added, was suspended until March 2014 for consultations between doctors and the ministry in an attempt to reach agreement on an appropriate system.

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