NELSON Mandela Bay healthcare workers who are from this month managed by Bhisho could lose up to R10000 of their monthly income, the municipality’s public health executive director, Mamisa Chabula- Nxiweni, has warned.
In a letter from Chabula-Nxiweni to acting municipal manager Themba Hani dated July 2, she outlined the disparity that workers would experience, which includes losing travel and scarce skills allowances as well as long-service bonuses.
The Eastern Cape Health Department has, however, insisted workers will not lose out because of the transfer.
Chabula-Nxiweni’s letter is contained in a report on the provincial takeover of clinics and healthcare workers as from July 1. The report will be discussed at a council meeting tomorrow.
In the letter, Chabula-Nxiweni said: "It would appear that the nursing personnel, pharmacists, pharmacist assistants, medical doctors and radiographers will not be paid any [Occupation Specific Dispensation] for scarce skills in their July salary.
"The staff members who have to date received an entrenched travel allowance or a fixed [car] allowance will also not receive such an allowance.
"No staff will receive a scarce skills allowance; no monthly long-service bonus will be paid to ex-Uitenhage staff.
"This impacts severely on the take home monies expected in the salary of staff in July. In some instances, staff will be experiencing a loss of between R9000 and R10000.”
She said the workers had not been asked to state their medical aid and pension preferences. "Employees will not have housing payments, medical aid or any other required deducted payments made. This further jeopardises the medical aid continuity.
"The municipality’s human resources sections have not yet advised medical aids of the transfer. Transferred staff will thus be liable to pay the full medical aid payment at the end of July,” she said.
Provincial Health Department spokesman Sizwe Kupelo said there were "enemies of the transfer” that were misleading the officials.
"I want to make it clear that we are taking the workers but no one will lose their benefits. If people were getting car allowances as part of their packages, there will be no loss.
"We have organised a special run to ensure that all staff will be paid by the end of the month. The only ones that will be affected are those [three] who did not sign the transfer agreement.
"We will continue to work with the municipality, so if there is a shortfall in money paid to the staff the municipality will pay it and the department will reimburse them [municipality],” Kupelo said.
He said the department would meet the about 400 primary healthcare workers on Friday to dispel all fears.