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HindustanTimes Tue,02 Sep 2014

Striking docs cripple healthcare at PGIMS

Sat Singh, Hindustan Times  ROHTAK, August 19, 2013
First Published: 23:40 IST(19/8/2013) | Last Updated: 23:40 IST(19/8/2013)

The postgraduate and resident doctors of the Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (PGIMS) continued to boycott services for the third consecutive day here on Monday.

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Nearly 500 doctors had gone on strike on Saturday after the mother of a patient had allegedly attacked a doctor on duty in the emergency wing of the institute on Friday night.

“Nearly 5,000 to 6,000 patients come to the PGIMS on a daily basis but Monday being the first day of the week and people coming from other districts and states, the footfall increases by nearly 500,” said a senior doctor of the PGIMS.

Institute director Dr Chand Singh Dhull said: “The heads of all departments concerned have been asked to talk to their students (protesters) who have gone on strike without any prior intimation.”

On further action, he said: “If the similar situation continues, we will be forced to take action against them.”

On being asked about the reason behind continuing the strike even after an FIR had been registered against the patient's kin who had attacked the doctor, he said: “We are also surprised at the doctors' decision of continuing the strike, but not coming up with any demand from the institution.”

Meanwhile, the protesters, who are not being led by any particular person, continued to raise slogans against the PGIMS authorities on their alleged failure in ensuring doctors' security.

A doctor, on the condition of anonymity, told HT that the incident that took place on Friday was not the only one. He said: “It was the third attack on a doctor on duty by a patient's relative in the past 45 days.”

Sources in the PGIMS alleged that doctors were also at fault in two of the three incidents reported recently. The CCTV footage clearly showed that a doctor on duty was arguing with the patient's mother before she attacked him, they said. In another incident that took place a month ago, the doctor on duty had discharged the patient, who later died even after he was advised complete bed rest and urgent medical care, sources said.

A professor at the PGIMS termed the continuation of strike for three consecutive days a failure on part of the authorities concerned, who wanted to have an upper hand in all matters. He said that had the PGIMS had a good administration system, the issue would have been resolved on Friday only.

Patients turn to civil hospital

Patients, who knocked at the doors of the PGIMS on Monday but had to face disappointment due to the ongoing strike, looked towards the civil hospital for treatment.

A medical officer at the civil hospital said: “For the past three days we have witnessed an increase of 25% in the number of patients coming here for treatment, which has added to the burden on the hospital.”

Bimla Rani, 39, came from Bhiwani district on Monday to get herself checked for a stomach-related problem at the PGIMS. Later, she went to the civil hospital. “We reached the PGIMS around 12noon. After getting to know that doctors were on strike, we came to the civil hospital around 1.30pm as we can't afford treatment at private nursing homes,” she said.

She said: “Though we were attended to by the civil hospital doctors, we have to stay here for one more day as the reports of the medical tests are awaited. Laboratory services at the civil hospital close at 2pm.”


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