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Doctors’ strike hits health services in Dakshina Kannada

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DRAWING ATTENTION: Doctors of the Governement Wenlock Hospital in Mangalore continued their strike on Tuesday.
DRAWING ATTENTION: Doctors of the Governement Wenlock Hospital in Mangalore continued their strike on Tuesday.

Staff Correspondent

Primary health centres in rural areas of the district are the worst affected

Emergency and post-mortem services to be discontinued from Wednesday

Programme to distribute DEC tablets to contain the spread of filaria is in disarray

MANGALORE: Primary Health Centres (PHCs) in rural areas of the district have been worst hit by the State-wide government doctors’ strike, which entered its second day on Tuesday. District health officer H. Jagannath confirmed that barring a few exceptions, the PHC network had come to a grinding halt.

The district and taluk-level hospitals were still taking in emergency, post-mortem and Medico-legal cases. But these services would also be discontinued from Wednesday if the demands of the striking doctors are not met, Dr. Jagannath said.

Impact

The mass drug administration drive to contain the spread of filaria has suffered a setback because of the strike. Although the programme is being carried forward by the nursing and clerical staff, with help from nursing interns, according to sources it is in disarray with the absence of doctors. Dr. Jagannath is the district president and district surgeon J. Prabhudeva is the vice president of the Karnataka Medical Officers’ Association – the umbrella organisation under which doctors have begun the agitation seeking fulfilment of their demands.

Doctors of the Health and Family Welfare Department are demanding that they be paid salaries on par with doctors working in the Department of Medical Education. The doctors, who are working on contract basis, are demanding regularisation of services.

Doctors, who have been staging a dharna outside the Government Wenlock District Hospital, told The Hindu that since January this year they had submitted eight memorandums to the State Government. This was the last resort, said Sudarshan, a striking doctor.

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