After three alleged attacks on doctors and nurses at civic-run YCM Hospital, a dedicated Covid hospital in Pimpri, the medical staff at the hospital staged demonstrations on Monday, demanding stringent security measures.
The PCMC administration also directed filing of an FIR against a corporator and action against patients’ relatives who allegedly created ruckus at the hospital after death of the patients.
Nearly 100 doctors held the protest for nearly three hours. They said only off-duty doctors held demonstrations and medical services at the hospital were not affected.
In a span of less than 24 hours on Sunday, doctors and nurses were allegedly abused and threatened thrice. The first two of the three incidents occurred on Sunday morning and in the afternoon. In the first incident, the medical staff had to lock themselves up in a room to escape the mob’s fury.
The third incident took place at around 11 pm, when BJP corporator Sandeep Waghere from Pimprigaon reached the hospital and allegedly had a verbal argument with the doctors on duty. The doctors alleged that he also tried to beat them up, but they fled the spot.
When contacted, Waghere said he had an argument with doctors over the death of an elderly citizen due to their “negligence”. But he denied that he either abused or tried to beat up the doctors. “The entire day, I was in touch with the doctors, requesting them to provide an ICU bed for a patient from my ward. I had also made plasma available to them for the patient. They kept promising that they will provide ICU facility, but did not do so,” said the corporator.
However, Waghere said when he reached the hospital ward around 11 pm, he found the patient lying motionless. “I asked the doctor, they said they will shift the patient to the ICU in the next 10 minutes. However, other patients in the ward said the elderly patient had passed away an hour ago… This showed that the doctors were not even aware of the condition of the patient. After this, I had an argument with the doctors on duty. I did not beat them up or use foul language. I have video recording of the incident, I will prove it,” he said.
Stating that these incidents have shaken the confidence of the medical staff, Municipal Commissioner Shravan Hardikar said, “I have directed the YCMH administration to file an FIR against the corporator and all those who tried to attack the medical staff on Sunday. Stringent action is being taken to ensure that there is no repeat of such incidents in the future.”
The PCMC chief said the civic administration will step up security at YCM Hospital with the help of police and private agencies. “We will appoint additional security personnel and will also try to get extra police reinforcement. We plan to place bouncers on every floor of the hospital,” said Hardikar. “…It has also been decided to set up a helpline centre at the War Room at PCMC headquarters, to answer queries relating to patients from relatives… whether local residents or corporators, they should all contact the helpline to get an update about the health of their patients at civic hospitals,” he said.
Ajit Mane, president of the YCMH unit of Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD), in a statement, condemned the attack on the doctors and urged the PCMC administration to ensure proper security for the medical staff and resolve other grievances. “… All resident doctors are working as frontline Covid warriors and treating patients tirelessly. In the last four months, there have been repeated incidents of doctors being threatened and mentally tortured by patients’ relatives. In less than 24 hours, three such incidents happened. Despite informing the concerned authorities in the past, no firm action has been taken. We strongly condemn such incidents. We request the PCMC and the YCMH administration to take necessary steps for the security of the doctors, nurses and other hospital staff,” stated the Association.
Dr Rajendra Wable, dean of YCMH, said, “We have given a complaint to the police. They said they will investigate and then lodge an FIR.”
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines