Why doctors at AIIMS Delhi wore bandages while treating patients
Earlier this week, an unruly mob attacked two doctors in Kolkata. They claimed an elderly patient died due to "medical negligence". In the attack, one junior doctor got seriously injured and is fighting for his life. The distressing turn of events sparked doctors' protests across India. And on Thursday, AIIMS doctors voiced their concerns in a striking manner by wearing bandages while treating patients.
Backstory: A 75-year-old patient died, his relatives 'blamed' doctors
On Monday, grim scenes took over Kolkata's Nil Ratan Sarkar Medical College and Hospital (NRS) after a 75-year-old patient died. The kin of deceased attacked doctors alleging medical negligence. Dr. Paribaha Mukherjee suffered a serious skull injury and was admitted to ICU. Standing shoulder to shoulder with their colleague, doctors in Kolkata went on strike on Tuesday. Doctors across the country also condemned violence.
After the terrible attack, doctors spoke up
In a bid to turn the attention of citizens towards the sorry state of affairs, hundreds of doctors took to social media. They explained how the medical profession is not as "glamorous" as one would imagine. They also pointed out that despite trying their best, they can't save lives sometimes. There were others who remained furious and blamed the government for ignoring their safety.
Another doctor was shocked at society's apathy
"If people can empathize with minorities, the LGBTQ community, animals, why can't the same society stand with its doctors? People who can discuss GoT, NewsBytesapp.com/news/business/tiktok'>TikTok, can't discuss the gravity of this situation? I feel betrayed," Dr. Lily Singh, a junior doctor at RIMS, told NewsBytes.
Doctors at AIIMS and Safdarjung won't work today
While everyone has sort of turned a blind eye towards this intense problem and given it a political color (looking at you Mamata Banerjee), doctors are not letting the issue die down. On Friday, doctors will boycott work at AIIMS and Safdarjung, two of the most famous government hospitals in Delhi. Further, all out-patient clinics and routine services will remain suspended.
Despite strike, emergency department will function properly at Safdarjung
"Around 1,600 resident doctors from Safdarjung will go on a strike. This will affect the clinics and routine services, however, we will ensure that the emergency department functions properly," said President of Safdarjung Hospital's resident doctors' association, Dr. Prakash Thakur.
At AIIMS and Safdarjung, doctors treated patients while wearing helmets
On Thursday, resident doctors at AIIMS and Safdarjung sent a strong message as they wore helmets and bandages while treating patients. Meanwhile, a letter from AIIMS medical superintendent confirmed that routine OT services will remain suspended on Friday. "However, some specific cases may be taken up for surgery as per feasibility and mutual agreement between concerned faculty," the statement added.
Meanwhile, Union Health Minister had a message for doctors
Separately, government hospitals under the banner of Federation of Resident Doctors' Association (FORDA) will go on strike on Saturday. On Friday, they will hold a candle march. Meanwhile, Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan said he would talk to Chief Ministers regarding the security of doctors. He urged doctors to ensure essential services aren't hampered.
Doctors are an integral pillar of society: Dr Harsh Vardhan
"Doctors are an integral pillar of society and often work under stressful and difficult conditions. I urge patients and their caregivers to observe restraint. I also urge doctors to observe restraint so that essential services to the people are not disrupted," the BJP leader added.
On the other hand, Mamata Banerjee gave an 'ultimatum'
The spark started in Kolkata but Trinamool Chief Mamata Banerjee showed no remorse. Instead of ensuring a safe working environment for doctors, she gave them an 'ultimatum' on Thursday, asking them to resume work or 'face consequences'. But the doctors defied her 'orders' and said they would keep agitating till the culprits aren't punished. Not all problems can be solved with iron rule, Didi.
Our doctors deserve better. We must stop failing them
Amid the uproar, there are many who believe that doctors should end their strike and "do their jobs". But asking doctors to take the moral high ground and forget everything would be unjust. All they are asking for is a safe working environment for saving lives. This isn't too much.