Citing recent cases of violence against doctors, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) on Monday (July 1) asked the government to declare hospitals as “safe zones” and asserted that exemplary punishment for perpetrators of such acts should be a component of the central law.
On National Doctors Day, the IMA organized a mass awareness programme throughout its 1,750 branches and emphasized the insistent requirement for the enactment of central legislation to avoid violence against the medical fraternity. The programme was inaugurated by IMA’s National President Dr Santanu Sen and also marked the birth and death anniversary of Dr Bidhan Chandra Roy. He was born on July 1, 1882 and died on the same date in 1962, aged 80 years.
Citing the recent cases of violence against doctors, the apex medical body demanded that the government should declare hospitals as “safe zones”. “Exemplary punishment for perpetrators of violence should be a component of the central law and suitable amendments should be brought into the Indian Penal Code and code of criminal procedure.”
“Health care violence has its origin in lack of infrastructure and inadequate human resources. Issues of medical profession involving doctor-patient relationship and effective communication also play an important role,” said Sen. Sen said that a doctor-patient relationship is based on trust, loyalty, and respect.
“We have seen unprecedented violence against medical professionals in last few years, resulting in mistrust and ultimately more suffering for innocent patients. Doctors do their best to end the suffering of patients but the end result is not in their hands. But for any unfavourable outcome, people take law into their hands and resort to violence. This ultimately hampers the treatment to other patients as well. It should not be tolerated in any civilized society,” he said.
The IMA’s theme for this year is ‘Safety In Hospitals Is Everyone’s Concern. Say No To Violence.’ Sen also unveiled a mural of Dr B C Roy at the body’s Delhi headquarters. The highlights of the event included ‘nukkad natak’ on the theme ‘Violence in healthcare’ along with blood donation camps. Over 500 medical students and healthcare workers were present on the occasion.