A resident doctor was attacked in Sion Hospital in Mumbai by the relatives of a patient on March 19.

Published – MARCH 24, 2017 11:44 IS

A resident doctor at Sion Hospital was allegedly assaulted on Saturday by the relatives of a patient who died a few hours after being admitted.

A resident doctor in Dhule civil hospital was brutally attacked when he suggested a patient brought with head injury be taken to another hospital since they lacked neurosurgeon’s expertise.

Forty-nine doctors have been attacked in Maharashtra alone since 2015. There is even an online petition in change.org seeking safe work environment for doctors.

Doctors in Maharashtra launched a state-wide protest since the Sion Hospital incident and they’ve been getting support from their medical fraternity across the nation.

As doctors were on mass leave, thousands of patients at public hospitals are inconvinienced. Surgeries were cancelled, several patients were turned away from Out Patient Departments (OPD) and only emergency cases are being handled.

Private hospitals too join protest

Private hospitals in Delhi have joined the on-going protest by government doctors demanding safe work environment here on Friday.

The nation-wide protest started after relatives of a deceased patient beat up a resident doctor at Mumbai’s Sion Hospital. Nearly 4,000 resident doctors across Maharashtra have gone on mass leave in protest of the incident.

In Delhi, doctors at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) have been working with helmets on for the third day on Friday, while Thursday saw over 10,000 government doctors in the city on mass leave.

On Friday, leading private hospitals including Sir Ganga Ram expressed their solidarity for the agitation and partially suspend its operations.

“Our hospital expresses solidarity with concerns of IMA and DMA regarding safety of doctors. General and private OPDs of our hospital are not function on Friday. However, the in-patient as well as emergency services will function normally,” Dr. D.S. Rana, chairman of the management board at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, said.

Fortis Hospitals and Apollo Hospitals too extended their support to the movement. Fortis Hospital management maintained “Our doctors continuously strive to save and enrich lives. We strongly condemn the act of violence against doctors any other hospital staff. Safe and secure work environment is the basic requirement for caregivers to provide best possible medical care to patients. We at Fortis Healthcare are firmly committed to our patients, and our medical services remain unhampered.”

On Thursday, nearly 40,000 city doctors including ones from Delhi and central-government hospitals were on a mass causal leave throwing OPD services out of gear from 9 am to 4 pm. Several planned surgeries were postponed due to the agitation.

Doctors stand united for safe working environment

United in their demand for a safer work environment, over 10,000 doctors from across major government hospitals in the city, including Ram Manohar Lohia, Lady Hardinge, Lok Nayak and the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), participated in a protest on Thursday.

Doctors in about 40 major hospitals, except AIIMS, went on a mass causal leave, with the Indian and the Delhi Medical Associations extending their support to the agitation.

ICUs operational

Although emergency services were operational at the hospitals, out-patient departments, wards and routine operation theatres were unavailable to patients between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Dr. Pankaj Solanki, president, Federation of Resident Doctors’ Association (FORDA), said only doctors running emergency services and ICUs were working.

At AIIMS, resident doctors continued to work with helmets on for the second day on Thursday as a mark of protest.

“Doctors at AIIMS have decided to continue their duties wearing driving helmets as part of the #SavetheSaviours campaign. AIIMS is a tertiary care hospital where poor patients from across the country come with prior appointments. Therefore, we will not stop our work,” said Dr. Vijay Gurjar, president of the resident doctors’ association at AIIMS.

He added that the institute condemned the Maharashtra government’s move to suspend doctors.

“Our doctors will continue working with their helmets on till the government comes back with a favourable response,” said Dr. Gurjar.

Highlighting how assault on doctors have become a routine affair, a member of the Delhi Medical Association said, “Violence against doctors has been a constant cause of strikes in Delhi. However, nothing has been done to stop the attacks.”

Meanwhile, more hospitals are likely to join the protest.

Dr. D. S. Rana, Chairman, Board of Management, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, said: “Our hospital expresses solidarity with the concerns of IMA and DMA regarding the safety of doctors. General and private OPDs of our hospital will not function on Friday. The in-patient as well as emergency services will, however, function normally.”

Stalemate continues

Meanwhile, in Maharashtra, the stand-off between the doctors and the government continues. The doctors, who had gone on a mass casual leave on Sunday, demanding proper security, are yet to join work.

The government had asked them to start work by 8 p.m. on Thursday, warning if they failed to comply, they would lose six months’ salary.

Courtesy: The Hindu


Link – http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/doctors-join-hands-demanding-safe-work-environment/article17637668.ece