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Dawes urges doctors not to get dragged into industrial dispute

Published:Thursday | June 4, 2015 | 6:57 AMKarlene Brown, Assistant News Editor - Radio

As the nation's rank and file police officers get ready for a third day of protest action, President of the Jamaica Medical Doctors Association, Dr Alfred Dawes is warning members of the medical profession not to get dragged into an industrial dispute with the government.

Thousands of police officers have been calling in sick since Monday evening.

The government has secured an injunction in the Supreme Court compelling the officers to abandon the industrial action and return to work.

However, a statement purported to be from the Police Federation has instructed members to stay home, take their medication and get better before returning to work. 

Workers are required to provide a letter from a doctor granting sick leave, for absences of three or more days. 

According to Dr Dawes, while it would be difficult to prove that sick leave was granted fraudulently on a case by case basis, doctors could face tough sanctions if found guilty.

He says offending doctors could be struck off the registry of physicians available to practice in Jamaica.

 

President of the JMDA, Dr. Alfred Dawes

Attorney General, Patrick Atkinson who secured the injunction against the police officers in the Supreme Court, says he has received no further instruction on the matter from the government.

He says he has not been informed of any defiance of the court order by police personnel.

The attorney general says if there is a breach of the court order, the court will deal with it appropriately.

The government has come under pressure from the opposition for the manner in which the injunction was sought against the police officers.