More meetings will be held between the Hartal Doktor Kontrak (HDK) movement and the health ministry to discuss issues related to contract doctors, says HDK spokesman Dr Muhammad Yassin.
Speaking to reporters outside the health ministry building in Putrajaya yesterday, he said this was one of the things promised by Health Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa in a meeting that lasted about 40 minutes.
HDK also submitted a memorandum highlighting its demands during the meeting, he said.
"Zaliha promised to have constant engagement with HDK so that we can be the intermediary between contract doctors and the recently established high-level committee (HLC)," he said.
He added that HDK wants the ministry to include their representative as a member of the HLC and for the HDK to be the "middle point" between the ministry and government contract doctors in efforts to find a solution that will please all parties, as contained in the memorandum.
"However, Zaliha said HDK's involvement in the HLC might be slightly difficult given that the HLC was formed at the Cabinet level," he said.
Zaliha announced that on March 31, the Cabinet had agreed to set up the HLC to deal with the issue of contract doctors, saying it would involve several ministries and agencies as well as Chief Secretary to the Government Mohd Zuki Ali.
Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, the HLC chairman, was reported as saying that the government would ensure the implementation of a win-win solution so that no party is at a loss or feels left out in resolving the contract doctor issue.
HDK also wanted the government to speed up the process of establishing the Health Services Commission and the Health Reform Commission as measures to improve the welfare and secure the positions of contract healthcare workers.