CHENNAI: Doctors and medical students continued their strike on Wednesday, leaving assistant professors and paramedical staff to compensate for the shortage of hands. The strike, which is into its third day, has raised serious ethical questions whether doctors should strike work at the cost of patients.
It all started on Monday when scores of doctors and students from various departments of Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital demanded the release of a senior orthopaedic professor of Madras Medical College Dr M Sudheer imprisoned in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, after a complaint from a money lender.
“The Tamilnadu Government Doctor’s State Association (TNGDA) stands by Dr Sudheer arrested on fake documents. We show solidarity for him to fight the case legally,” said its president Dr K Senthil. He, however, appealed to doctors to avoid strike or other steps that affect patient care.
The Government hospital’s services were affected because over 1,000 doctors joined the protest.
“Doctors can show solidarity by sporting badges or through a demonstration after duty hours. The issue is in court. Dr Sudheer should first get bail and then allowed to come back to Chennai, after which he has to prove his innocence. It is a long way to go,” he said.
However not everyone feels the strike is unnecessary. “Generally, we do not interfere in the personal matters of doctors but this case is different. It has raised questions on the professional prestige of doctors. This doctor’s action has led him to get involved in an organised crime involving two states,” says a member of medical association.