PETALING JAYA: Contract doctors are demoralised after finding out that their contracts have been extended for two years without a salary increase, a news portal reported.
According to Malay Mail, under the new policy contract, medical officers (MO) who were employed from December 2019 would remain at grade UD41 and not upgraded to UD43, which would bring in a higher pay.
Previously, housemen who completed their training by default would be promoted from grade UD41 to UD43.
The portal noted that promotion would result in an increase of pay of RM2,947 to RM3,611.
The report added that the Health Ministry had announced that there would be no salary hike in an internal policy on March 16.
"Basically, our renewed contract will still be UD41, which means the same pay as a house officer but few hundred less than our counterpart (MO) in the department, ” a MO told the Malay Mail.
Another officer said that the policy was "demoralising", adding that it made him feel unappreciated and exploited, especially during a time when their services in the public healthcare sector were needed the most.
"Those who are called to assist in battling Covid-19 are these very contract officers. Two days ago, there’s even a quiet directive to some of us to report instantly by Monday or else we will not be continued, ” he said.
In November last year, under the Pakatan Harapan administration, former health minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad had said that the Cabinet had approved the ministry's appeal for contract doctors to be promoted from housemanship grade UD41 to contract doctors grade UD43.
Dr Dzulkefly had also said that the promotion would also include dental and pharmacy officers.