Let not the healers feel they are being hunted

Published: Jun 19, 2019, 07:26 IST | A Correspondent

Earlier over 40,000 doctors in Maharashtra had boycotted work as part of a strike call given by their apex body Indian Medical Association in support of their agitating colleagues in Bengal.

Let not the healers feel they are being hunted

Doctors in Bengal on strike since two of their colleagues were assaulted allegedly by a patient's relatives after he died last week, called off their protest after Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee gave them some assurance of steps taken to tighten security for doctors in the state.

Earlier over 40,000 doctors in Maharashtra had boycotted work as part of a strike call given by their apex body Indian Medical Association in support of their agitating colleagues in Bengal. While there has been a temporary solution, there is a feeling that we have not seen the last of these doctor-student conflicts. The final chapter has to still close, with reference to this impasse.

There has to be an effective and lasting solution to the violence against doctors. The problem has cropped up in the past, smaller strikes have taken place. This paper had reported extensively on earlier strikes. Today, we see these smaller strikes snowball into a bigger one across the nation.
We need hospitals and medical facilities extensively covered with top quality camera surveillance. It would be good if doctors have an emergency helpline that gives them recourse to security if and when they sense danger. This should be a quick response service.

Persons with legit grievances have to first engage the doctor in conversation. Mediators, like a committee can be formed within institutions to resolve this. If matters are unresolved, dialogue can be escalated but it should always be talks, mediators and the legal route. Let us work towards a complete end to this war that is being played out in medical facilities. There have been lapses, black sheep in this profession, medical mistakes... but we compromise the quality of professionals hugely, if the healers feel they are the hunted and the saviours think they need saving.

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