Checks on hospitals start today
The health department and police will jointly inspect five medical colleges in Calcutta starting Thursday to find out security and infrastructure deficiencies, a health official said on Wednesday.
“The joint team will zero in on the problems and submit its recommendations in a week,” the official said.
“We plan to implement the suggestions made by chief minister Mamata Banerjee — during her meeting with junior doctors — at all medical colleges in the state within a fortnight.”
Junior doctors across the state were on a ceasework from June 11 to protest the attack at NRS Medical College and Hospital on June 10 following the death of a 75-year-old patient that left two of their colleagues injured.
The ceasework was called off on June 17 after a meeting between Mamata and the protesting junior doctors at Nabanna.
The decision on the joint inspection was taken on Wednesday at a meeting between health secretary Rajiva Sinha and Col Nevendera Singh Paul, deputy commissioner of police, combat battalion, who’s been made the nodal officer.
Singh Paul’s primary duty is to coordinate between the various tiers of security at hospitals.
The principals of five medical colleges in Calcutta were present at the meeting.
The joint inspection, which is scheduled to start from Thursday, will look into lapses in the security system of medical colleges.
At the Nabanna meeting with the Mamata on Monday, junior doctors had raised the security issue.
“Private security personnel who are now deployed at hospitals have proved to be ineffective. So, we have decided to deploy a professional security agency,” a Swasthya Bhavan official said. “Also, it was discovered at the meeting that there is no protocol on filing FIRs in case of such attacks on government hospitals.”
From now on, medical superintendent-cum-vice-principals of medical colleges and superintendents of government hospitals will have the authority to file FIRs, the official said.
The teams will try to find out other problems as well apart from security at government medical colleges, he said. Team members will speak to patients, their relatives, doctors and hospital officials to find out the problems.
“There are problems like lack of communication, shortage of trolleys and wheelchairs, overcrowding and admission refusal.... All these create situations where relatives of patients get into heated arguments with doctors and assault them at times.”
Metro reported on Wednesday that though junior doctors had called off their ceasework and resumed duties, such problems persist.
Patients did not get wheelchairs and many had to lie on the floor of emergency wards for hours till they got a bed.
Relatives of patients had to look for trolleys and carry the patients themselves — a job supposed to be done by Group D employees.