Junior doctors call off strike at SSKM and CMCHhttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/kolkata/junior-doctors-call-off-strike-at-sskm-and-cmch/

Junior doctors call off strike at SSKM and CMCH

The strike called by junior doctors of SSKM and Calcutta Medical College hospitals was called off on Tuesday evening.

Decision after assurance of additional security for doctors and upgradation of emergency equipment

The strike called by junior doctors of SSKM and Calcutta Medical College hospitals was called off on Tuesday evening. The striking doctors,however,have put forward a set of demands,making it clear that they will resume their protest if their demands are not met with.

The strike was called off following an assurance of additional security for doctors and upgradation of emergency equipment. Tension had sparked off on the premises of Calcutta Medical College and Hospital after the death of Bimal De (66),a Bowbazar resident,who was brought to the hospital here on Sunday night with serious head injuries. Soon after his death,about 90 people from Bowbazar and neighbouring areas ransacked the hospital and assaulted five junior doctors on duty,alleging negligence.

At this,the junior doctors of the hospital immediately resorted to ceasework. In a similar turn of events,relatives of Sneha Roy (5),a resident of Baghbazar,had beaten up junior doctor on duty in SSKM on Sunday night,after Sneha died around midnight in the paediatric ward,where she had been admitted that night with the complaint of stomach pain. Soon,junior doctors of SSKM declared ceasework.

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The doctors’ strike badly crippled the services in both the hospitals,especially in emergency wards.

“We know the ceasework has posed a great problem to patients,but we need security. We just cannot be beaten up like this. This is the second such incident to have happened in the past four months,” said Gouranga Pramanik,former general secretary of SSKM students’ union. “We will see if the promises the hospital authorities have made are kept. If not,we will resume our movement,” he said.

The seven demands put forward by striking doctors include suspension of the ERS police officer and the ward officer who were witness to Sunday night’s vandalism,implementation and follow up of Red Card system (allowing only two family members to stay at night with a patient),display of sign boards carrying hospital rules in each ward,action against those responsible for assault on doctors and development of hospital infrastructure. “Six people have already been arrested for assaulting the junior doctor. We have fulfilled most of their demands and have appealed them to join work immediately. Some of their demands will require more time to be fulfilled. Ceasework cannot be a remedy to any problem,” said Pradip Mitra,the director of SSKM Hospital.