Medical officers owing allegiance to the Bihar State Health Services Association (BSHSA) will strike work on January 15 and 16, 2013, to protest against the nonacceptance of their long-pending demands, including, an improvement in working conditions of serving doctors in the state.
Doctors appointed on contractual basis are also expected to go on strike with BSHSA members, association’s general secretary Dr Ajay Kumar told newsmen here on Wednesday.
“The government has literally forced us to take the extreme step, as none of our demands have been met so far,” he said, adding that the association was still willing to withdraw the strike call provided the government agreed to accept their demands.
He said the excessive interference of bureaucracy in health matters had offended the medical fraternity seriously and jeopardised patients’ welfare. Assault on doctors on duty had become a routine affair in Bihar and the administration was either a party to the brutality or remained a mute spectator to the crime, he alleged.
The BSHSA also carried the grouse that the legislation enacted to protect doctors of the state from falling victims to violence remained just on paper. There was not even a single instance wherein the provisions of the law were enforced to guard the medical officers, he said.
Kumar said despite an agreement arrived at between the government and the BSHSA, the medical officers were still not receiving salary and perks at par with the serving doctors at the Centre. Spokesman of the BSHSA Dr Ranjit Kumar said senior health officials in the state headquarters were humiliating doctors and treating them as their peons. District magistrates, who were chairmen of district health societies, at times issued orders with the sole intention of humiliating the doctors, he alleged.
Secretary of the association Dr Kumar Arun was also present at the press meet.