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India, Nagaland

IMA strike: Healthcare services hit across India; agitation successful in Nagaland

By EMN Updated: Aug 01, 2019 1:01 am
Doctors and students from Indian Medical Association (IMA) stage a protest over National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill, outside Super Specialty Hospital of Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) in Ranchi on Wednesday. (PTI)

Eastern Mirror Desk

Dimapur, July 31: Healthcare services were hit in most government hospitals across India on Wednesday after doctors went on a 24-hour nationwide strike to protest against the National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill that was passed in the Lok Sabha on Monday.

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) had called for withdrawal of non-essential services from 6 am on Wednesday till 6 am on Thursday to protest against the Bill, which the doctors say will encourage quackery and affect the standards in medical education and healthcare services in the country.

Outpatient services in most government hospitals in West Bengal, Telangana, Bihar, Kerala, Nagaland and several other states were crippled as doctors participated in the strike called by the IMA, according to reports.

Indoor and outdoor departments were non-functional at several medical facilities in Kolkata, including the SSKM Hospital, R G Kar Medical College and Hospital, and the Calcutta Medical College, where patients waited in serpentine queues, reported PTI.

Sanjeev Singh Yadav, Secretary, Telangana wing of the Indian Medical Association, claimed that barring a few corporate hospitals, about 16,000 IMA member doctors and over 10,000 medical students participated in various forms of protests across the state.

IMA, the largest body of doctors and students in the country with around three lakh members, has warned that it would intensify the agitation if the government doesn’t pay heed to its concerns. It has claimed the Bill provides for licensing of 3.5 lakh unqualified non-medical persons to practice modern medicine, which could have a detrimental effect in healthcare.

The Bill is awaiting clearance from the Rajya Sabha.

(With inputs from PTI)

OPDs, CHCs shutdown successful in Nagaland

The president of Nagaland In-Service Doctors’ Association (NIDA), Dr. Ritu Thur confirmed that all district hospitals in the State took part in the all India shutdown of OPDs on July 31 to protest against the NMC Bill.

Speaking with Eastern Mirror, Thur said that the shutdown of the OPDs (Outpatient departments) in government hospitals and community health centres (CHC) were peaceful and successful in all the districts.

“As a protest against the new bill and complying to the shutdown called by the Indian Medical Association (IMA) for 24 hours, all government (hospital) OPDs and CHCs were shut,” said Thur, adding that emergency services were exempted from the strike.

In Dimapur, chief medical officer, Vikato Kinimi said that the district hospital’s OPD remained shut on Wednesday as NIDA had decided to participate in the strike. He however said that “emergencies, casualties and ICU-related services functioned normally in the district.”

The Indian Medical Association, Nagaland State branch has issued a press release expressing its gratitude to all the members of the medical community for unanimously supporting the strike against the Bill that it has described as “undemocratic and senseless” that could push “healthcare and medical education back to the dark ages.”

It has also appealed to all the medical doctors to continue opposing the Bill and further requested all the sections of the society to join them in “correcting this egregious travesty.”

By EMN Updated: Aug 01, 2019 1:01:08 am