Ever since the Kolkata doctor attack, the number of attacks on doctors is increasing by the day. Doctors are living under constant fear. Doctors feel that their life is at stake while they save the life of their patients. They have been recent attacks over doctors in the country, but the conviction rate is quite low
The hooligans and crowd attacking the doctor community is a thing of fear these days. Every day, in any nook or corner of India, a doctor or a nurse or any health worker, in a hospital is attacked. These attacks may be of any form, it could be verbal abuse, slapping, beating, injuring, or maybe assassinating these health service providers, making out their solemn duty of giving treatment to the patients.
Keeping this in mind, Dr B. Keshav Rao has started a petition on Change.org to garner signatures which will help give justice to doctors. 75 per cent doctors in India have experienced violence or abuse at least once in their practice. Due to this doctors are coming under tremendous pressure. The workload in government hospitals is also increasing.
On one hand, doctors are demanding strong and concrete legislation on the central level, while on the other hand, a doctor has started a petition on this public platform. The doctor is appealing to people to sign this petition so that doctors can work in a safer environment.
WHO estimates there’s less than 1 Doctor for a population of 1000 people in India which is below the standard norm.
With medicine falling out of favour as a preferred profession amongst young career aspirants, a further drop in this number is inevitable and will eventually lead to lack of talent in the healthcare industry and suffering for patients, to an extent that, doctors might fear to accept high-risk cases.
In the current environment:
- Doctors are feeling vulnerable
- Their families are worried about their safety
- Aspiring doctors are reconsidering their career options
- The doctor-patient ratio is nowhere close to the WHO standard/norm.
At least 19 states, including West Bengal that witnessed the ghastly incident of mob violence against a resident doctor at NRS Medical college, have passed a legislation of an Act that protects doctors.
This Act, covering doctors affiliated to institutions as well as independent practitioners, outlaws attacks against physicians and damage to their property. But, such incidents raise a big question on the enforcement & implementation of this act in these 19 states and further the absence of such an act in remaining states.
Speaking about the relevance of this petition, Dr Avinash Bhondwe, President-Elect, IMA Maharashtra, said, “Doctors are always soft targets. Even though doctors save the life of a patient, but they are criticized by people. Today’s scenario is such that no one would wish to become a doctor in the future, and those who are providing services should stop doing it.”
He added, “The current situation for the medical fraternity is not so good. Attach on doctors are rising day by day. No government pays the heed towards the serious issues of doctors. In my opinion, now we should start a campaign #SaveDoctors like we have a #SaveTiger and #SaveGirlChild moment.”
Dr B. Keshav Rao in his petition stated, “With your signature, you shall enable us to forward this petition to the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Ministry of Home Affairs, and Board of Governors of Medical Council of India for enforcement of the Medical Protection Act.”