Inhuman Condition of resident doctors: Gujarat HC directs Govt to frame Rules
The doctors have reiterated about the inhumane long working hours. In some health institutes, the resident doctors work for straight 30 hours resulting in them facing extreme burnout. Besides, leave issues abnormal amount of work pressure, harassment, exploitation, irrational working environment, deficiencies in system and shortage of staff are other factors to blame.
Ahmedabad: Addressing the long-standing issue on lengthy working hours of resident doctors in hospitals, the Gujarat High Court has recently called for specific rules and regulations to perk up the working conditions for them.
Medical Dialogues has been reporting on this issue wherein the doctors have reiterated about the inhumane long working hours. In some health institutes, the resident doctors work for straight 36 hour duties resulting in them facing extreme burnout. Besides, leave issues abnormal amount of work pressure, harassment, exploitation, irrational working environment, deficiencies in system and shortage of staff are other factors to blame.
Last year, the Delhi HC had ordered the government to fix the working hours of resident doctors and the doctor-patient ratio in hospitals.
Earlier, the West Bengal State Health and Family Welfare Department mandated that doctors have to serve for minimum 8 hours per day at the institution for minimum six days a week in order to constitute a 48 hour work week.
Thereafter, many states fixed the working hours for its resident doctors.
Now, taking example from other states, the Gujarat HC has ordered the state government to frame guidelines, rules and regulations to improve working conditions of resident doctors, reports TOI.
This issue came up in front of the HC during a hearing of a petition filed by a now surgeon Dr Patel who was a PG medical student at BJ Medical College when a patient was operated for liver cirrhosis 7 years ago. The surgery was performed by two surgeons at the Civil Hospital. Dr Patel had to remain present in the OT as a PG medico and a resident doctor. However, he was not involved in surgery.
It was alleged that the surgeons had forgot forceps in the patient’s stomach. Finally, when the forceps was removed from her stomach, the patient had died. Subsequently, all the 3 doctors were booked under IPC Section 304A of IPC for medical negligence.
Aggrieved, the doctor moved the HC. To his relief, the HC quashed the charges against him citing that he was not involved in the surgical process.
However, during the course of hearings on the case, the HC bench observed there were no codified rules and regulations for the resident doctors, governing their duty list, service hours and service conditions.
The bench hereby suggested that there should be guidelines for proper working conditions of resident doctors and in view of the same, Justice Gokani ordered the government to frame rules and regulations for resident doctors regarding their duty hours, types of duties etc. for better working environment which can add qualitative work in their PG Medical studies.
To complete this exercise to frame the said rules and regulations, the HC has given a six month deadline to the department of health and family welfare, adds the TOI report.