Sunday, 17 December, 2017

Protesting Bengaluru doctors go on indefinite strike, stick to their demands

Why are Karnataka doctors protesting? All you need to know about the Bill Karnataka: Private Doctors moved on indefinite strike
Marlene Weaver | 16 November, 2017, 14:11

"When the bill was drafted, we gave it to the doctors and they suggested some changes", the minister said. The protest will take place at the Indian Medical Association (IMA) office in Chamarajpet.

Out-patient services in private hospitals across Karnataka was affected on Monday as some 50,000 private doctors went on a strike to protest against an amendment bill meant to regulate their functioning. "However, emergency services, selective surgeries, dialysis and deliveries will be carried out", Private Hospitals And Nursing Homes Association (PHANA) president C Jayanna said. Dr Devi Shetty, founder Narayana Hrudalaya, told BM, "In protest against the bill, we will stall work across all our units to show solidarity with protesting doctors". Read Also: Patients dropping like flies as government, doctors spar Explaining the situation Dr Giridhar Gyani, Director-General, Association of Healthcare Providers (India) and former secretary-general, Quality Council of India said, "There is widespread perception that private healthcare was commercial and profiteering".

The state high court stepped into the row as 6,000 private medical establishments - barring emergency services - were closed.

About 300 private doctors will be on 24-hour relay hunger strike in batches near the Souvrna Soudha in the state's northern town till four provisions in the bill are withdrawn.

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Jayanna also rejected the charge that the doctors were holding the state to ransom. "All this will stop attracting youngsters to the profession", he said. Will government at least consider this as a lesson and improve the conditions of the government hospitals? Meanwhile, two more deaths were reported in the state on Wednesday.

Politicians from all major parties run medical colleges and hospitals and have been opposing the KPME Bill in its current form.

With the medical fraternity unrelenting in its demand that the bill would have to be scrapped as it infringes on their basic rights, it remains to be seen if Chief Minister Siddaramaiah holds back and does not table the bill in its present form in the Belagavi session or gives in to pressure and amends the contentious points in it. I appealed to them to withdraw their strike.

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