Turkey's Health Ministry said on Oct. 27 that medical staff in both public and private institutions will not be allowed to quit their jobs during the COVID-19 outbreak.Turkey's medical staff will not be allowed to quit jobs for the next 3 months
Theministry's notice sent to the country’s 81 governor's offices alsosaid that retirement procedures will not take effect during thisperiod, except for those who are forced into retirement due todisability or are retired on age grounds.
Theministry has also suspended annual leaves or unpaid leaves forhealthcare staff during the pandemic.
The ministry had similarly banned resignations for healthcare staff in March due to the COVID-19, but that regulation was effective for a period of three months.
The ministry's new circular comes as Turkey on Oct. 27 registered new 2,209 “patients,” taking the total tally to 366,208. The country also reported 76 new COVID-19 fatalities over the past day, bringing the total death toll to 9,950, according to the Health Ministry's figures.
On Twitter, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said: "We cannot be successful unless the number of patients in critical condition and active patients are brought down."
Bugün tespit edilen 2.209 yeni hastamız var. Ağır hasta sayımız 1.827’ye yükseldi. Ağır hasta ve aktif hasta sayısı düşmeden başarılı olamayız. Mücadele birlikteliği tedbirleri istisnasız uygulamaktan geçiyor. Salgına karşı organize olalım. https://t.co/RVlhe7786O— Dr. Fahrettin Koca (@drfahrettinkoca) October 27, 2020
The Turkish Medical Association (TTB) released a statement with regards to the ministry's new regulation saying it is “unacceptable.”
“When the COVID-19 is still not being recognized as an occupational illness at the eight month of the pandemic, when healthcare staff are not being tested [for COVID-19] on a regular basis, it is unacceptable that their leaves and resignations are prevented,” the TTB said on its official Twitter account.
#SağlıkcınınCanıYokMu Pandeminin 8. Ayında COVİD-19 Meslek Hastalığı Sayılmazken, Sağlıkçılara düzenli test yapılmazken; Sağlık Çalışanlarının izin ve istifalarının engellenmesi kabul edilemez. #Yönetemiyorsunuz pic.twitter.com/xeTJmX88wW— TürkTabipleriBirliği (@ttborgtr) October 27, 2020
The TTB has been for months now criticizing the government for its handling of the pandemic, calling for more transparency and coordination from Ankara.
The group has been saying that official figures underplay the true scale of the pandemic, especially Ankara’s decision to report only symptomatic cases of COVID-19.Health care union to file lawsuit against gov't agency for not recognizing Covid-19 as occupational diseaseIstanbul's 28 districts see more than doubling of COVID-19 cases in past week