TAHITI BRACES FOR HOSPITAL DOCTORS STRIKE

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PAPEETE, Tahiti (Tahitipresse, Nov. 11) – Hospital doctors throughout French Polynesia are due to go on strike starting at 7:30 am Monday, and private practice doctors plan to close their offices on Wednesday in support of the strike. The private doctors' action is due to last only one day.

While the hospitals will continue to offer a minimum of service, including all medical emergencies, the union representing the hospital doctors advised the public Sunday to cancel all non-urgent visits to the hospitals.

In a communiqué sent out to Tahiti's news media, the hospital doctors' union said it "has no other goal but that of curbing the rampant degradation of the (French) Polynesian hospital system and maintaining, for the benefit of residents, the level of health care that they are entitled to as citizens of a developed land".

The strike will affect services at the Territorial Hospital Center in the Mamao neighborhood of Papeete, as well as smaller hospitals on Tahiti's peninsula, Raiatea in the Leeward Islands, Nuku Hiva in the Marquesas Islands and Tubuai in the Austral Islands.

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