On Friday, September 20, doctors stated they would continue their indefinite strike ongoing since September 3, despite the release of the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctors Association (ZHDA) leader on Thursday, September 19.
Significant disruptions to medical services are to be anticipated across the country. Related protests are likely in the coming days, amid a heightened security presence. Clashes between protesters and security forces cannot be ruled out.
Peter Magombeyi, president of the ZHDA, was allegedly abducted by security forces in an attempt to break the doctors' strike he called, ongoing since early September, to denounce their inability to provide adequate services because of low salaries, a lack of basic health materials in state hospitals, and the increasing cost of living. Doctors held protests in Harare on September 15-19 to demand his release. Disruptions to medical services were reported at several public health institutions across the country. Government officials announced the deployment of medical professionals from the uniformed forces to help tackle the disruptions and insure assistance to patients with critical conditions.
Individuals present in Zimbabwe, including in Harare, are advised to confirm doctor's appointments, to anticipate longer waiting times in medical facilities for the duration of the strike, and to avoid any potential protests.
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