NEW DELHI: The Lady Hardinge Medical College (LHMC) has terminated the services of marshals and bouncers from its campus on Tuesday following directions from Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya. Sources in the ministry said that the move came after Mandaviya expressed displeasure on a visit to the hospital. He even shared in his speeches that the presence of heavy security arrangements intimidated patients.
“They don’t come to fight. They (patients) come for the treatment and doctors should show empathy towards them,” the union minister had said while speaking at an event at Ram Manohar Lohia (RML) earlier this year. The Centre-run hospital’s deputy director V K Sharma wrote a letter to the private agency which was roped in for the security arrangement. “Services of marshals/bouncers are temporarily suspended at LHMC and Associated Hospitals,” the letter read.
According to sources at the union health ministry, the move is likely to be emulated at other Centre-run hospitals. “RML Hospital and Safdarjung Hospital have also employed the services of private security personnel. Soon they may be instructed to end the contract,” a senior official said. However, the move has irked the doctors fraternity who are now concerned for their security since incidents of assault by attendants of patients are usual at public hospitals.
Dr Sarda, general secretary, the Resident Doctors Association, LHMC, said the doctors were not consulted before incorporating the decision and a team of doctors will meet the hospital administration to get to the reason behind the move “We are understaffed and the additional security gives us the confidence to work in a conducive environment. We were not consulted. However, we will try to get the reason behind the move first as the removal of security will concern us all for our security,” he said.
A few months ago, a junior doctor from the paediatric department of LHMC was brutally assaulted by attendants of a child who was brought dead to the hospital. The attendants did not accept the declaration of death by the doctor on duty and pressurised him to admit the child. When refused, the doctor was severely beaten.
In other hospitals
According to sources at the union health ministry, the move is likely to be emulated at other Centre-run hospitals in the capital. Ministry sources said that the move came after Mandaviya expressed displeasure on a visit to the hospital. He even shared in his speeches that the presence of heavy security arrangements intimidated the patients who visit the hospitals