Special Correspondent

TIRUCHI: The house surgeons (compulsory rotatory residential internees) of K. A. P. Viswanatham Government Medical College and Annal Gandhi Memorial Government Hospital here have alleged human rights violation and have requested the intervention of the Tamil Nadu Governor, who is also the Chancellor of the Tamil Nadu Dr. MGR Medical University, to save them from exploitation.

Their grouse was that they were made to work for 31 hours continuously for about three days per week in addition to 10 hours on other days. In a memorandum to the Governor, all 106 house surgeons of the hospital had stated that in the ‘Admission Day’ procedure which is followed in medical college hospitals, a house surgeon reports for duty at 7.30 a.m. and works for the whole day (24 hours) and continues his duty on the next day, the post-Admission Day, up to 2.30 p.m. (seven hours) without any rest in between or any time for sleep.

They pointed out that when they were posted in the Department of Orthopaedics and Paediatrics for a duration of two months, they were involved in 31 hours of continuous duty on alternate days, that is, a house surgeon will have to work for 30 days without sleep or rest in a period of 60 days.

The house surgeons had also forwarded to the Governor the resolutions passed at the general body meeting of CRRIs a few days ago in which they had stated that they were forced to do paramedical and clerical work, including giving the due injections to all the patients in the wards, transporting the blood samples to the lab, collecting the investigation reports from the lab for all the patients, and so on.

They pointed out that Regulation 14 of the Medical Council of India had clearly stated that the house surgeons were expected only to learn and acquire medical skills and merely indulge in clerical and paramedical work for the entire one-year period of internship.

In a resolution passed at the CRRIs’ meeting, they had stated that there were more than 900 paramedical staff at the hospital, including staff nurses, student nurses, male and female nursing assistants, hospital servants, laboratory technicians and a lot of technicians, who could carry out the clerical and paramedical work instead of asking the 106 house surgeons to do the work. The CRRIs had informed the Dean of the hospital that they had decided to abstain from some of the paramedical and clerical work from Friday and decided to form an association to get their grievances redressed immediately.