Protest mounting over suspension of doctor

Protest has been mounting among the medical fraternity in the State over the suspension of a senior faculty member, who is also the COVID Nodal Officer at the Government Medical College Hospital (MCH), Thiruvananthapuram, over the alleged negligence committed in the care of an elderly patient.

The medical faculty at the MCH had gone on a flash strike and demonstration on Friday afternoon itself, soon after the government issued the order suspending G. Aruna and two head nurses.

Talks between doctors and the Health Minister failed, following which the entire medical faculty in all government medical colleges went on strike, boycotting OP and ward duties from 8 a.m. till 10 a.m. Doctors in Thiruvananthapuram MCH are now on a 48-hour relay hunger strike, which is expected to end on Monday.

“The government has chosen to ignore the ground realities of acute human resource shortage at the MCH, which has resulted in the poor care given to the patient. Rather than resolving the situation, the government has chosen the easy way of making a scapegoat of one of our most hard working and respected senior colleague. This cannot be accepted. Unless Dr. Aruna’s suspension is withdrawn, we will stay away from all non-COVID duties from Monday,” R. Dileep, secretary, Thiruvananthapuram unit of Kerala Government Medical College Teachers Association (KGMCTA), said.

Mass resignation

Following a directive issued by the KGMCTA, COVID Nodal Officers in Thrissur, Ernakulam, Kozhikode and SAT Hospital here also submitted their resignation letters. They have asked that they be relieved from the COVID additional duty that had been thrust on them, in protest against the manner in which Dr. Aruna had been suspended, even when a detailed inquiry by the Director of Medical Education was still pending.

“The incident involving the patient was very unfortunate. Unless the government take steps to understand the administrative and systemic issues at the MCH and resolve it, more such incidents will occur. COVID nodal officers have been under tremendous stress all these months. This indifference of the government to our plight is demoralising for the medical fraternity. This is an emotional issue for us,” Dr. Dileep said.

Meanwhile the nurses’ unions are also on protest and they observed Saturday as “Black Day.’

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Printable version | Sep 29, 2021 8:44:59 AM |

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