Resident doctors of all government hospitals have decided to go on an indefinite strike from Monday after their token protest on Friday got no response from the government.
The residents and medical students of 14 hospitals had gone on a token strike protesting delay in improving security conditions in the hospitals. As a part of the protest, the residents refrained from OPD (Out-patient department) and other hospital services from 9 am to 4 pm.
The other demands include ensuring availability of essential drugs and surgical equipment in the hospitals, filling up of vacancies of the Group C and D staff, policy to regularize ad-hoc employees, filling up of vacant posts of doctors, more hostels for resident doctors and increasing the number of operation theatres.
“Delhi health minister Satyender Jain called us to the Delhi secretariat at 4 pm but when we went, he sent one of his representatives to talk to us. The representative said he was in a meeting and would not be able to meet us. Even the Union health minister J P Nadda called us for a meeting at the Nirman Bhawan, but he too did not meet us and instead we met the DG health services, said Dr Balwinder Singh, president, Federation of Resident Doctors Association (FORDA).
“We’ll launch an indefinite strike from Monday if the government fails to fulfill our demands. Even AIIMS’ residents will join us,” Singh said.
“The strike affected the OPD services but senior consultants attended to the patients and emergency services were normalised. The residents called off the strike at around 2 pm at our hospital,” said Dr Siddharth Ramji, medical superintendent, Lok Nayak hospital.
“The strike did not affect hospital services as we have enough staff to run the show. The senior faculty and doctors got engaged in running the OPD, emergency, OT and other services at the hospital, said Dr Rajpal, medical superintendent, Safdarjung hospital.
The prominent hospitals that took part in the token protest included Ram Manohar Lohia (RML), Lady Hardinge Medical College, Maulana Azad Medical College, Safdarjung hospital, Lok Nayak hospital, Deen Dayal Upadhyay (DDU) hospital, Guru Teg Bahadur hospital.