A doctor suspended, another transferred at Neyyattinkara

Doctors in Health Service across the district are going on a day’s strike on Thursday, disrupting all hospital services except emergency services, in protest against the government’s order suspending a doctor and transferring another at the Neyyattinkara General Hospital, following the death of a patient there last week.

Doctors at the Neyyattinkara hospital launched an indefinite strike on Wednesday, following the strike call given by Kerala Government Medical Officers’ Association. They have threatened to shut down the casualty services at the hospital also from Thursday.

KGMOA leaders told the media here on Wednesday that the committee which had been set up to probe the patient’s death had not been fair to doctors, who had provided due care to the patient within the possible time and means. There was nothing in the patient’s autopsy report which pointed at medical negligence. The injection administered to the patient was not a new one. He had already been given five previous doses, KGMOA leaders said.

The Neyyattinkara hospital was elevated to the status of General Hospital, without upgrading its facilities, they said.

Meanwhile, the Health Department is trying to minimise the difficulties that the public might be put to on Thursday. All doctors under contract service of the NRHM have been asked to be on duty at the hospitals in the morning itself.

Anyone who does not turn up for duty on Thursday will be terminated, according to an order issued by the State Mission Director.

Four doctors each will be additionally assigned for duty at Peroorkada district hospital, General Hospital, and Women and Children Hospital by the NRHM.

The Health Minister, in a statement here, said that the strike by doctors was unwarranted when they had the option of appealing against the government action. Disciplinary action would be taken if the doctors did not withdraw from the strike, he said.