Following an ultimatum was given by Bombay High Court on Friday, the doctors of government and private hospitals across Maharashtra ended their strike. Meanwhile, nearly 135 patients have died in the past five days due to the strike. According to the orders of the Court, they came on duty at 8 a.m. in all government hospitals.
The HC took a serious view on the disrespect of its order and strongly warned the Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) that either the physicians return to duty or face the termination of the service. The bench of CJ Majula Chellur and G. S. Kulkarni said that if this continues, the hospital management is free to take action against them. It also includes service termination. BMC told the court that due to their strike in the past five days, 135 patients have died in government hospitals in Mumbai. There are 53 cases in KEM, 51 in Sion LTMG and 34 in Nair, due to lack of emergency facilities.
It is noteworthy that in March, all senior doctors, including professors and assistant professors in SMS Hospital, Jaipur, had gone on strike for 36 hours due to which 38 died in two days and 140 patients could not be operated. This is just an example of a hospital, because of their strike, many such patients could not have been operated and many had died.
After all, what wer*/e the Reasons for the Doctors’ Strike?
The strike started at the Sion general hospital after a resident doctor was beaten up. It was reported that he was the third doctor in a week to be beaten up. Soon, around 40,000 doctors from private sector joined the 4000 protesting doctors from the MARD. The entire issue has its origin from the attacks that they had to face at the hands of the patients’ relatives.
Even as the strike was going on, a doctor at a hospital in Sion was attacked; and a doctor in Dhule government hospital was attacked by the patients’ kins. They were demanding for the security to shelter them against the violent acts by the patients’ relatives.
The protesting doctors continued to defy the court rap and around 3000 resident doctors continued their mass casual leave. They even defied the government’s directive to resume duty and said that the government can deduct 12 months’ salary but the safety has to be provided to them.
Recently, the incidents of hitting or disrespecting the doctors by the relatives of the patients are taking place in other parts of the country besides Maharashtra, due to which the ‘God on the Earth’ is required to be protected. The medical profession is a very respectful and dignified, even the patient considers the doctor to be his god; and in society also, doctors receive a great reverence.
Most of them have kept the profession to its dignity by their service and integrity, but some of them have lost the dignity for their love of money. For this, they have adopted very disgusting handcuffs, such as providing unnecessary medicines and consulting unnecessary checkups for the commission; and the doctors of the government hospital pay special attention to those patients (and these patients receive all the government facilities) who can be found at the doctor’s resident and pay him a good amount.
Although all of them are not alike, but some doctors are such due to whom the whole medical profession is facing a downfall and disgrace. As a result, doctors strike for their safety. For this, both the patients’ relatives and careless they are responsible, but the doctors who perform their duties honestly are also becoming the target of the patients’ agitated kins.
All India Medical Association (IMA) should make strict rules for such medical practitioners. The IMA should mark the doctors and bring them to the society, their membership should be terminated and they are banned for the lifetime.
How far the Doctors’ strike is Justified?
This is not the first time that doctors have staged a strike on security issues, but this strike, which is limited to one hospital, has been done simultaneously in many hospitals. It cannot be denied that the demand for the security of the doctors is justified. Due to lack of security in government hospitals, doctors have to face heterogeneous situations. In spite of such situations being created repeatedly, apathy towards the safety of the hospitals has continued. A permanent solution to the safety concerns of doctors should be resolved. Doctors should also understand that medical is such a profession, where one’s life can be lost just because of a slight negligence.
In such a case, doctors should not restore to strike to convince the authorities, even if they are justified. They should keep in mind that because of them, a patient cannot have problems. The government should also seriously consider the demands of the doctors and ensure that they do not have to take such a step in future.