Government doctors steadfast on their strike against Civil Servants Adjustment Bill

  • Nepal Medical Association extends solidarity with the protest that has hit thousands of people
- Arjun Poudel, Kathmandu

Apr 7, 2019-

With the government doctors steadfast on their strike to press the government for amendment to the Civil Servants Adjustment Bill, thousands of patients across the country are likely to be deprived of medical services for a third consecutive day on Sunday.

The agitating doctors, who have been protesting against the new bill that puts them under the jurisdiction of provincial governments, say they wish to remain under the scope of federal government so as not to hamper their career growth.

“We were forced to take such a drastic decision because the government does not seem serious towards ending the plight of the patients and addressing the genuine problems raised by the doctors,” Dr Dipendra Pandey, chairman of Government Doctors Association of Nepal, told the Post.

The government doctors say they are willing to be posted anywhere so long as the deployments are made by the federal government.

Pandey said that the Ministry of Health and Population was not ready to discuss the concerns of the agitating doctors.

 “We waited until evening for a call for discussion, but no one contacted us,” he said on Saturday.

Mahendra Prasad Shrestha, chief of the Health Coordination Division at the ministry, told the Post that he had nothing to comment on the ongoing doctors’ protest.

“To hold discussion with the agitating doctors, we need directions and mandate from the health minister and health secretary,” he added.

Earlier last month, the government doctors had postponed their protest programmes after Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli asked for some time to address their grievances. The deadline sought by Oli expired last Monday, prompting the government doctors to strike. Meanwhile, the Nepal Medical Association has extended its solidarity with the protesting government doctors.

Issuing a statement on Saturday, the association advised the doctors to reject the government’s integration paper. Over 1,400 doctors work in government health facilities across the country.

Thousands of patients, especially those who cannot afford private hospitals, have been deprived of healthcare since Friday.

Published: 07-04-2019 08:20

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