The health set-up remains crippled in Rajasthan as both agitating resident doctors of government hospitals in seven districts and government show no signs of reconciliation even after a week of strike.
Caught between the doctor-government stand-off are the people who are left with no option but to approach private hospitals for treatment.
At Jaipur’s Sawai Man Singh (SMS) hospital, the footfall of patients at outdoor patient department (OPD) has come down by 30%-40%. Generally, OPD registers on average 9,000-10,000 patients per day but it has come down to around 6,000-7,000 patients per day due to the strike, a doctor said.
Gauri Shankar, 70, from Dausa along with his relative Paramanand had come to the SMS hospital on Saturday for treatment of his stomach ache. But he will consult a private hospital, thanks to the strike by resident doctors.
“The doctors’ strike is on...no doctors will be available. It is better to get treated from a private hospital,” Parmanand said.
SMS medical college principal Dr US Agarwal and SMS hospital superintendent Dr Man Prakash Sharma were not available for comments despite repeated phone calls.
More than 4,000 resident doctors in seven districts are on strike. They are demanding changes in examination pattern set up by the MCI wherein thesis and answer papers of post graduate students will be sent for evaluation outside the state.
Resident doctors are backbone in the government hospitals and medical colleges, as a majority of work from OPD to indoor patient department to surgeries are looked after them in supervision of senior doctors. In the absence of resident doctors, the entire workload is on medical college teachers and medical officers.
The scene is no different in other government hospitals in Jodhpur, Ajmer, Udaipur, Bikaner, Kota and Jhalawar districts.
In Kota, OPD services, surgical operations and indoor patient admissions are adversely hit at the government hospitals affiliated with the Government Medical College.
Around 240 resident doctors and senior resident doctors are on strike as per the Kota Resident Doctors Association. Kota Resident Doctors Association president Manish Singh Chauhan said his colleagues are running a four-hour long ‘Parallel’ OPD services and doctors are sitting on relay strike at the demonstration site outside the Maharao Bhim Singh hospital.