Resident doctors at Mumbai’s civic hospitals have threatened to go on strike from January 2 if their demands, including payment of arrears, are not met.
Their peers in government-run medical colleges in the state have already announced to skip work from Monday.
The strike by the resident doctors, who get hands-on experience while pursuing medical education, at Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) hospitals could potentially cripple outpatient department (OPD) services of the facilities.
There are thousands of resident doctors attached to BMC hospitals.
The BMC wing of the Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD), an umbrella body of resident doctors in the state, has said that resident doctors will continue to be a part of emergency services.
In a letter to the authorities, the BMC MARD has sought the implementation of a Government Resolution on dearness allowance at BMC hospitals along with clearance of arrears of dearness allowance from July 1, 2018.
"The payment of eight months of COVID arrears of resident doctors of Nair Hospital (NAIR MARD) and two months arrears of resident doctors of KEM and Cooper hospitals are pending. The BMC should provide adequate hostel facilities for the resident doctors of all BMC and GMC hospitals," the letter said.
The resident doctors have pressed for the recruitment of 1,432 senior resident doctors as well as bringing parity in resident doctors’ salaries across the state.
It has also asked the government to fill vacancies of associate and assistant professors to overcome shortage of teaching staff.
The association has also sought equal pay to all senior resident doctors across Maharashtra to remove any discrepancies in pay.
The BMC MARD said it had raised its demands with the civic body and the state government on multiple occasions, but they were not heeded.
"We have requested the authorities to kindly look into the matter and take necessary actions for the same on an immediate and urgent basis. If these long pending, genuine demands are not addressed, BMC MARD will have to take harsh decision of withdrawal of nonemergency and OPD services from the morning of January 2,” the association said.
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