Nurses and paramedical staff of the Government Medical College and Rajindra Hospital here on Friday continued to boycott their duties for the third consecutive day, to demand regularisation of jobs.
Sources claimed that due to the strike, patients were being denied medical services and turned away from the hospital.
A visit by an HT team revealed that the emergency ward, which is usually fully occupied, was 40% vacant on Friday.
On the condition of anonymity, a doctor said, “Most of the patients walked away without proper treatment as they were not getting the requisite medical attention due to the nurses' strike.”
Patients rued that their tests were not being conducted as there was no one to take samples or issue laboratory slips.
Authorities also disclosed that due to the strike, medications were being delayed and necessary fluids were not being given to the patients on time, as there were no care-providers, leading to “total chaos” in the hospital.
Paramjit Singh, who had come to the hospital with a snakebite victim from Nabha, alleged, “I have been sitting here with my friend's blood sample since morning. No one is present at the laboratory to issue the slips, and the doctors said they would start treatment only after test results.”
Sources said the blood donation camps being held to collect platelets for dengue patients were also affected due to the strike.
The hospital authorities said, “Nurses are the backbone of hospital services, so their strike has paralysed the functioning of the hospital. The strike has further added to the woes of the patients, especially the large number of dengue patients.”
The condition of ward number 10, where most of the dengue patients are being treated, has been the worst hit. While some patients have been asked to share beds, many have been turned away and asked to take medication at home.
College principal KD Singh, however, maintained that the strike had no affect on the hospital services.
“Right from Class 4 employee to doctors, everyone is working round-the-clock to provide
uninterrupted services,” he claimed.