HASSAN/KOPPAL/BELAGAVI: Even as OPD services returned to normalcy in the state on Tuesday, doctors numbering around 300 from three district chapters of the Indian Medical Association continued to sit in front of Suvarna Soudha, in Belagavi, in protest. Six deaths have been reported in the state for want of medical treatment. Health Minister KR Ramesh Kumar expressed regret over the deaths.
A three-month-old baby from Tiptur allegedly died due to non-availability of treatment due to the dharna by private doctors against the Karnataka Private Medical Establishment Amendment Bill. The baby’s parents visited several private hospitals in Tiptur on Monday. A nursing student died in Tumakuru following a cardiac arrest due to delayed treatment. In Koppal, a Panchayat Development Officer Gynappa Badnal (56), who suffered heart attack on Tuesday allegedly died for want of medical treatment.
In Dharwad, 13-year-old girl Vaishnavi Jadhav, who was suffering from fever on Friday died after her health deteriorated by Sunday. With no doctors manning private hospitals, the parents finally took her to KIMS Hubballi, where she died from suspected dengue.
In Belagavi’s Athani, 8-year-old Kallawwa, who was being treated for juvenile diabetes died after admission to a government hospital as her regular family private doctor had closed the hospital due to the strike.
As private doctors continued to sit in protest in Belagavi, patients suffered. Mahesh Chandrakant Waghamode (27) from Darur village in the taluk died on the way to a government hospital on Tuesday following an accident. Private hospitals in the vicinity were closed. Dr Veeranna B, secretary, Indian Medical Association, said, “We have not asked private hospitals to shut down. We are not responsible for these deaths. In fact, the government is.” Veeranna said according to their sources, the Bill will be submitted by Joint Select Committee of the State Legislature to the house on Wednesday and be discussed.