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Bengaluru City doctors working under intense fear and insecurity

Bengaluru City doctors working under intense fear and insecurity
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Bengaluru City doctors working under intense fear and insecurity

Highlights

While the surge in Covid-19 cases remains stuborn in the city, a growing number of medical professions are being attacked by relatives of Covid patients.

Bengaluru: While the surge in Covid-19 cases remains stuborn in the city, a growing number of medical professions are being attacked by relatives of Covid patients.

Doctors in the city are under tremendous pressure to attend their duties as they are forced to work in extreme work conditions without proper facilites.

If the frustration of working long hours staying away from their families is not enough, the medical professionals are facing increasing attacks from the family members of Covid patients.

Incidents of violence against doctors in the state has increased in the recent days.

Hundreds of doctors, both government and private hospitals, across the state, wore black bands and held placards demanding that they be provided adequate security and protection while they perform their duties during the pandemic. There have been several incidents of violence and attacks by relatives of Covid patients.

Doctors were attacked for alleged delay in attending to the Covid patients or for following strict protocols in handing over the bodies of the deceased to their family members.

In 2009, a separate law was introduced in the state to protect doctors. Assault on a duty doctor was made punishable by up to three years prison. According to reports, more than 40 doctors were assaulted in the last nine months across the state.

"Torching of an ambulance and stone-pelting at BIMS in Belgavi by relatives of a dead Covid patient as well as the assault on nurses and doctors at KC General Hospital due to delay in handing over a Covid patient body has created a sense of fear and insecurity. There are many other cases which have gone unreported because of various reasons. The doctors and other medical staff are doing their best to control the situation," Dr. Ganesh said.

What is worse is cases were registered against 344 doctors in the state at various police stations over the past 10 years. According to Karnataka Branch of the Indian Medical Association (IMA), an average at least one is assaulted every week. "Violence and assault on doctors, nurses or paramedical staff, damaging property is not acceptable. In many cases, police have refused to lodge a complaint and to file a FIR against the attack. On the other hand, senior officials have threatened doctors to take action under the Disaster Management Act and doctors are helpless. Doctors are working by putting their lives at stake to control pandemic" IMA, Karnataka said.

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