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Kerala - Thiruvananthapuram Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Doctors' strike from today

Staff Reporter

Patient care will not get affected, says KGMOA


Doctors will keep off field activities, VIP duties

‘State went back on pay revision promise'


Thiruvananthapuram: All doctors in Health Services will begin their indefinite non-cooperation strike from Sunday to protest against the “government's apathy towards pay revision.”

Government doctors will stay away from all duties other than patient care and hospital duties.

However, the doctors will not disrupt arrangements for the Pulse Polio immunisation drive to be held on Sunday and will fulfil all duties required of them except the reporting part, State president of Kerala Government Medical Officers' Association (KGMOA) S. Prameela Devi said.

KGMOA had given the notice on the non-cooperation strike to the government on February 21, expressing their displeasure at the government's ‘failure' to represent their grievances before the Ninth Pay Commission. The government had gone back on all the promises made to KGMOA at the end of an agitation by doctors in May 2008 demanding suitable pay revision, KGMOA said.

‘No response to notice'

There had been no response from the government to the strike notice, except to say that the doctors' case would be represented before with the ‘anomalies committee,' which would be set up soon, Dr. Prameela Devi said.

“Patient care will not be affected but the doctors will stay away from all field activities, immunisation camps, outreach activities, VIP duties, training programmes and review meetings, which are essentially the additional duties that a government doctor has to routinely spend time on, apart from their hospital work. All doctors who are holding additional charges will relinquish these responsibilities by March 31. Also, apart from the funds that they are currently handling, no new funds or projects would be handled by doctors as part of the non-cooperation strike,” she said.

It may be recalled that the last time the government doctors had gone on a non-cooperation strike over pay revision issues, the strike lasted two years during which time all public health activities suffered heavily. The doctors' non-cooperation had affected almost all field-level activities.

Doctors stayed away from all supervisory and monitoring duties and projects stalled as doctors refused to handle funds. It had taken the health system a while to recover from this setback.

KGMOA said that it was not its intention to disrupt the public health system. But, the doctors' grievances were genuine.

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