Kyiv’s Medical Workers Announce A Strike Due to Low Salaries
1 May, 2020

Medical workers at Kyiv’s City Hospital Number 8, in the Obolon region, have walked out of work and refuse to return, due to what they say are "lowered" salaries during the time of the coronavirus epidemic – of about $111 to $185 per month.

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This walk-out was confirmed by the hospital itself, which stated that only nurses and sanitary staff took part in the walk-out, without doctors, and that the protestors had already dispersed.

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A Facebook post on a regional page states that medical workers had been promised bonuses for working with coronavirus patients, but that in reality, they had actually received salaries of up to 30-40% less than prior to the epidemic. Nurses earned $111–$185, junior nurses – $111–$148, and doctors – from $222–$334 per month, confirmed by pay stubs attached to the post.

The post also reads that two whole departments of the hospital had already announced that they refuse to work under these conditions, and several will also go on strike.

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Kyiv Mayor Vitaliy Klychko said on April 30 online briefing that $33 million had been allocated for medical worker bonuses, insisting that city authorities are currently looking for ways to help the capital’s beleaguered medical workers.

“As you know, from April 1 all medical institutions in the country will be receiving funds – including for paying employee salaries – from the state, not from city budgets. This, I remind everyone, is the medical reform. Kyiv found and allocated nearly $33 million from the city budget to pay medical workers’ bonuses,” claimed the mayor.

According to him, medical workers at communal, nonprofit medical centers in the capital, which provide second-level (specialized) and third-level (highly specialized) care will receive additional bonuses proportional to the time they’d spent on shift.

For doctors, this sum totals up to $148, $111 for nurses, and $37 for junior medical staff.

“Doctors who work with patients who are suspected of being infected by the coronavirus, or who are coronavirus patients, have already received bonuses to their salaries for their work on March 13. The city established their bonuses in the size of nine official salaries. This way, doctors in March on average received from $1,113 to $1,855 salary, nurses from $927 to $1,113, and junior medical staff, from $742 to $927. They’ll receive the same salaries in April,” the mayor added.

Staff at emergency and catastrophic medical centers, in particular sanitation and ambulance workers who have been called on disinfection work will also receive a bonus for March.

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