Grievance redressal systems for patients have been proposed at private hospitals in Kozhikode district in the wake of frequent cases of attacks on healthcare institutions and healthcare workers.
According to functionaries of the district branch of the Indian Medical Association (IMA), a meeting of private hospital representatives has been planned on April 26 in Kozhikode to discuss the proposal. Alex Franklin, chairman, IMA’s committee for safe zone hospitals, is expected to address the meeting along with Joseph Benevan, State secretary of the organisation.
Sankar Mahadevan, district vice-president, IMA, said on Thursday that patients and their caregivers had often highlighted the lack of a system to air their grievances related to issues such as medical negligence. Through this proposed system, both the patients and their caregivers would be able to communicate their concerns to hospital representatives. It would be taken up with the authorities and doctors’ organisations such as the IMA, he added.
The proposal comes against the backdrop of the Kerala High Court cancelling the bail granted by the Sessions Court, Kozhikode, to two people accused of attacking P.K. Ashokan, senior cardiologist, at Fathima Hospital in the city on March 4. While cancelling the bail granted to Salmanul Faris and T. Mohammed Rashid on April 4, Justice Bechu Kurian Thomas pointed out that “the trembling hands of a surgeon and the shivering mind of a physician do not augur well for patients at large”. The judge said that doctors continued to face threats when a mishap occurs to a patient. Even for the slightest provocation, health personnel were being attacked. The casual approach adopted by courts while dealing with instances of attacks on health personnel also contributed to the tendency to resort to such violence, the court order said.