“We will not resume work at Sir Jamshetji Jeejeebhoy Hospital even if all the issues are resolved,” said Dr Tatayrao Lahane, the former dean of the hospital and Dr Ragini Parekh, head of the ophthalmology department, and the other honorary doctors who resigned on Thursday. Further, they have also demanded an enquiry against the hospital dean and strict action against her.
The hospital dean, Dr Pallavi Saple, has sought an explanation from Dr Parekh, on the appointment of Dr Sumeet Lahane, the son of Dr Lahane, who was allowed to perform surgeries in the department.
This comes after a three-member committee headed by Dr Sanjay Surase, medical superintendent, submitted its investigative report against Dr Sumeet Lahane.
“The report submitted to the dean reveals that the committee has sought an explanation from Dr Ragini Parekh, HoD, on the appointment of Dr Sumeet Lahane and also asked her to clarify three points, based on documents submitted by resident doctors as proof,” said Dr Saple.
Report submitted by the investigative committee is biased: Dr Lahane
“We have been serving J J Hospital and patients for the last 36 years and have done more than lakhs of surgeries and operations. But we did not expect to be humiliated by resident doctors and the hospital dean. All of us have resigned and will not be part of J J Hospital any further. The report submitted by the investigative committee is biased, as they have not asked for our version and we have the right to tell our side of the issue,” Dr Tatyarao Lahane said.
Meanwhile, the deadlock between resident and senior doctors entered the third day on Friday. The Maharashtra State Resident Doctors Association (MARD) is threatening to go on a state-wide indefinite strike if their demands are not met.
According to Dr Shubham Soni, MARD president, J J Hospital, resident doctors have alleged that Dr Lahane and Dr Parekh had been running the ophthalmology department ‘dictatorially’ and in a way that clearly violated the guidelines issued by the National Medical Commission at multiple levels.
Resident doctors' protest
Resident doctors in the ophthalmology department say that they have been dealing with several issues, such as not getting hands-on experience with surgery, minimal academic and research activity.
The report of the investigative committee said that Dr Sumeet Lahane was performing cataract surgeries and was also looking at routine OPD. If a government letter or order had been issued, asking him to perform surgeries and examine patients, a photocopy of the order had to be submitted. The third point raised by the committee was that a criminal case could be filed against Drs Sumeet Lahane and Ragini Parekh, as it was a legal offence for outsiders to perform patient examinations, surgeries, and other patient care work, without an order.
“We have raised these points with Dr Parekh and sought a detailed explanation and asked why no case should be registered against Dr Sumeet Lahane,” Dr Saple added.
Dr Parekh refused to comment on the issue.