Dismiss and replace, demand patients of striking doctors


The outpatient departments (OPDs) of the public hospitals of the provincial metropolis literally kept the patients out of the hospitals owing to the young doctors’ strike which entered its sixth day on Saturday.
The blatant denial of the health facilities to the masses in the intense heat and the worst-ever power crisis, forced the people to visit private clinics and even quacks in search of medication. The people, like in the past, criticised the young doctors and the Punjab government for its inability to bridle the ever rebellious youngsters of the medical fraternity.
The strike has caused immense hardships for the patients and their attendants who visit the public hospitals in thousands on a daily basis across the province.
The OPDs of the Mayo Hospital, the Ganga Ram Hospital, Services Hospital, Jinnah Hospital and other public health facilities remained shut for patients in the wake of the strike by the young doctors.
The young doctors have been demanding a revised service structure while their boycott of duties at the outdoor wards is a part of their pressure tactics to force the government into accepting their demands but so far, the Punjab government has remained unmoved.
A number of meetings were held recently which remained inconclusive, causing the masses to continue to suffer.
So far, the senior doctors have failed to persuade the protesting young doctors to resume their duties at the OPDs. Ironically and unfortunately, most of the protesting young doctors, who seem to be unfazed by the sufferings faced by the people, are working fulltime at private health facilities.
The stakeholders have demanded the Punjab government to take stern action against the protesting doctors if their demands for a revised service structure are not genuine and unacceptable.
They demanded that the services of the young doctors be terminated and new appointments be made in their places as thousands of unemployed doctors are available for the job.
Meanwhile, it was learnt that the general body meeting of the Punjab Young Doctors Association (YDA) will be called soon to decide the future course of action vis-à-vis the Punjab government’s indifferent attitude regarding the ongoing protest. The YDA had earlier vowed to extend the strike for an indefinite period of time until their demand for a revised service structure was fulfilled.