Striking health care workers yesterday in Tepic. Striking health care workers yesterday in Tepic.

Health workers strike over unpaid salaries

Shortages of drugs and other supplies also protested in Nayarit

Financial problems are not only affecting states where new administrations have been taking office.

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Since last week, health care workers in Nayarit have been taking job action to protest arrears in payments to workers and denounce shortages of drug, supplies and basic equipment.

Only the most basic emergency care is being provided in the state’s five hospitals, 15 specialized medical units and the 205 health centers.

Union leaders say three months of salaries are owed.

After a march by some 4,000 workers yesterday in Tepic, the state capital, union leaders met with government officials, who reportedly assured them they would be paid.

Union spokesman José Luis Martínez said the state government has close to 6.5 million pesos (US $320,000) that will be invested in purchasing drugs and supplies.

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He said financial issues began three months ago when the Seguro Popular health care program became a decentralized agency independent from the Health Secretariat.

The newspaper Milenio reported that while yesterday’s march was taking place, salaries were in the process of being deposited.

But workers will reportedly continue their job action until authorities sign a commitment with the union.

Source: Milenio (sp), Nayarit en Línea (sp)

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