Over 300 junior doctors in Hyderabad's Gandhi hospital who had on Wednesday refused to resume their duties after a deceased COVID-19 patient's family trashed an on-duty doctor with an iron stool, have on Thursday written to the Superintendent of the hospital and said that they will be continuing their strike.
The junior doctors said that their demands were "not assured by the Health Minister" on Wednesday. In the letter, they wrote, "We TJUDA (Telangana Junior Doctors Association) bring to your notice that we are continuing the strike as our demands were not been assured by the honorable health minister yesterday."
"We are not going to resume our duties until our demands be fulfilled in a time-bound manner by honorable chief minister/ health minister," they added.
According to a report in The New Indian Express, a deceased 55-year-old male patient was admitted with mild respiratory failure. At the time, the patient's poor prognosis was explained to his family members, a doctor said. However, the patient went to the washroom by removing his CPAP mask and suffered a cardiac arrest. He passed away at around 7.30 pm on Tuesday, he added.
The patient's family members then barged into the hospital and attacked the on-duty doctor. "They destroyed the plastic chairs and attacked the doctor on duty with an iron stool. He blocked the attack but was hit on his hip. Other doctors and nurses rushed to their safety and informed the police," said a doctor.
A case was registered under IPC sections and under relevant sections of the Epidemic Diseases Act and Telangana Medicare Service Persons and Medicare Service Institutions Act 2008, police said.
"Under any circumstances, the attack on medical staff will not be tolerated and firm and legal action will be taken," police said adding, "In this time, doctors are our frontline leaders."
(With PTI inputs)