Private doctors' strike hits out-patient care in Karnataka

Karnataka private hospitals call off strike reopen outpatient departments after High Court appeal

Arijit Sen HT

The Karnataka government has proposed amendments in KPME Bill 2007 to regulate the private hospitals.

As per the recent reports, Bengaluru private hospital doctors moved to indefinite strike protesting against the penal provisions in the amendment bill. Prominent doctors like Devi Shetty and Sudarshan Ballal will also join the protest between 10 am 6 pm- the protest will take place at the Indian Medical Association (IMA) office.

The proposed amendments are based on recommendations of former Supreme Court judge Vikramajit Sen.

The private doctors, however, made a decision to continue to treat in-patients and attend emergency cases in their hospitals, nursing homes and clinics.

"Out-patients were not seen or treated in private hospitals across the state today (Monday), as our members went on strike against the (amendment to the) Karnataka Private Medical Establishments (KPME) Act", IMA's state chapter Secretary B. Veeranna told IANS.

Meanwhile, representatives of the protesting doctors held discussion with Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

Medical services in the city has been hit. Six- hundred private clinics will be closed from tomorrow here, as 22000 doctors will go on strike to press for their demands, said the body of the private doctors on Wednesday.

The Karnataka Private Medical Establishments (Amendment) Bill, 2017, was passed with the aim of regulating private sector medical establishments and prescribes fixed prices for treatment and makes those doctors who charge excess fees, liable for stringent punishment. He said that the bill was not even tabled yet and the doctors were putting lives at risk with their agitation.

Kumar said doctors have a responsibility and by shutting medical services they are making common man suffer and said that the government has no intention to harass doctors or the private medical institutions.

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