Highlighting lack of medical infrastructure, dearth of resources for patients, and abysmal security provisions for doctors, the Delhi High Court has directed authorities to file an affidavit regarding the steps taken to improve the existing scenario.
A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Pratibha M Singh directed a volley of questions to authorities: “Why are doctors going abroad? Is there no employment in India? What is the patient-bed ratio?”
When it was submitted that the infrastructure was improving, the counsel for a doctors association said, “In Lok Narayan Jai Prakash Hospital, against the minimum requirement of 5 per cent to 10 per cent ventilators, there were merely around 20 ventilators for 20,000 beds”.
Regarding the lack of security, the bench, on a suggestion from a doctors association, said the authorities could display the punishment, as per law, in case of violence against doctors on hospital notice boards. They could also provide advertisements in newspapers to inform people.
The bench further said, “While people across the globe came to India for medical education, there was a situation of brain drain in the country, where doctors were going abroad.”
Meanwhile, counsel for the Delhi government and Delhi Police, Sanjoi Ghose, said police, in 2015, had requested the Union Home Ministry to sanction 395 extra homeguards for security. No action, however, was taken, he said.
The bench directed the authorities, including the Indian Medical Association, Union government, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to file an affidavit within a week, on the number of hospitals, steps taken to increase doctors strength, besides patient-bed ratio, along with security provisions.