Mumbai: 400 resident doctors go on strike at JJ Hospital

They want the transfers of Dean Dr TP Lahane and Dr Ragini Parekh; also want the institute to adopt Post Graduate curriculum prescribed by the Medical Council of India

The Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors’ (MARD) indefinite strike in JJ Hospital on Sunday morning with the support of around 400 members associated with it, has inconvenienced several patients, and their relatives continue to wait in uncertainty.

The doctors say the strike will continue till their demands are met
The doctors say the strike will continue till their demands are met

Rameshwar Lohar, a resident of Jalgaon, who shifted a relative to JJ hospital on Sunday for paralysis treatment, was warned of the resident doctors’ strike at the admissions counter. “We were asked if we really wanted to admit the patient because the treatment will take longer to start as doctors are on strike. We had already travelled so much to get here. There was no way to keep him waiting, so we admitted him,” he said. Since 11 am till late in the evening the family was waiting near the emergency ward while the patient was waiting to be transferred to a ward for proper treatment. “Now they have kept my relative in an emergency ward. But he has paralysis so he needs to be shifted to a ward for appropriate treatment which will continue for few days,” added Lohar. This is just one such case of many at JJ hospital where several relatives and patients are waiting for proper treatment to start or for surgeries to be conducted.

Read Story: Resident doctors from Grant Medical College, JJ call for indefinite strike

Rameshwar Lohar who got a relative to JJ from Jalgaon, said he (the relative) was admitted to the emergency ward, but must be admitted to a ward to get appropriate treatment for paralysis
Rameshwar Lohar who got a relative to JJ from Jalgaon, said he (the relative) was admitted to the emergency ward, but must be admitted to a ward to get appropriate treatment for paralysis

Kundan More, a resident of Khopoli has admitted his grandmother for kidney stone surgery but is on the waiting list. “Right now different tests are being done. We have not been given any date for surgery,” he said.

Another relative of a patient said, “My 62-year-old father has a tumor in the liver. After spending a lot of money on private hospital treatment we have now shifted him here from Shegaon. Now there is no way of taking him back when we have already spent Rs 12,000 on an ambulance to get him here. Here they have admitted him. At least he is in a hospital so we are glad.”

Doctors say
Talking about the strike, Dr Parameshwar Satpathy, President JJ MARD, told mid-day, “We demand the transfer of our hospital Dean Dr T P Lahane and head of the department of Ophthalmology Dr Ragini Parekh for subjecting resident doctors to mental harassment. Secondly, we want the institute to adopt Post Graduate (PG) curriculum prescribed by the Medical Council of India for Opthalmology. In this department resident doctors are allowed to assist only in minor surgeries. In this case, when that doctor is out of the course, he/she has learnt nothing more than his/her MBBS qualifications. Cataract surgery is one of the most important surgeries in Opthalmology. But even that is not allowed to many doctors.”

He continued, “The strike will continue until our demands are met.” Dr Satpathy said there have been couple of meetings with the authorities but they have not reached any conclusion.”

Official speak
Dr T P Lahane said, “The resident doctors want our transfers because we put them to task and they are not interested in work. In Ophthalmology, cataract surgery is allowed to only final year students as per the MCI guideline. First the doctors need to understand basics. We cannot let any harm come to patients. Final year doctors are not part of the strike because they are doing surgeries.”

When asked how the hospital is functioning with around 400 resident doctors on strike, Dr Lahane said, “We have staff of over 650 excluding the resident doctors. We are managing it properly. Routine surgeries have been postponed.”

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