Hospital closure hits patients hard

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Sep 3, 2018-

Hundreds of thousands of patients were affected on Sunday as the Nepal Medical Association closed non-emergency hospital services across the country, protesting against the provisions of the newly enforced Criminal Code.

In Kathmandu, the NMA staged a demonstration at the Maitighar Mandala, where hundreds of doctors submitted to the council photocopies of their practising licences numbering around 6,000.

“The NMC can go ahead to scrap our licence if the government doesn’t accept our demands,” NMA General Secretary Dr Lochan Karki told the Post.

“We met everyone we could. We had meetings with Deputy Prime Minister and Health Minister Upendra Yadav, Speaker Krishna Bahadur Mahara, Law Minister Bhanu Bhakta Dhakal, Attorney General Agni Kharel, Nepal Communist Party Co-chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, leader Subas Nembang and Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba,” said Dr Karki.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health and Population has warned doctors of penalty under the Essential Services Operation Act.

The Act provisions action against anyone who takes part in a strike restricted by the Act--up to six months in jail or fine up to Rs200 or both.

“The law was passed by the Cabinet after rounds of discussion. If the NMA thinks the new provisions are ambiguous, we can have a discussion to sort this,” State Minister for Health and Population Dr Surendra Kumar Yadav told the Post.

The NMA said its protests over the Criminal Code provisions, aimed at curbing medical negligence and recklessness by doctors, will continue.

Published: 03-09-2018 07:29

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