Enforcement of legislation deterring violence against doctors across India #SaveTheDoctor

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,000!

Mrs. Verma, wife of Dr. Pramod Kumar, a Cardiologist, worries about her husband’s safety when he is at work. The patient volumes require him to spend most of his time in the hospital, leaving him with barely enough time to spend with his family.
Dr Pramod Kumar has dedicated his entire life, like many of his ilk, for the welfare of his patients, prioritising their health over his personal time and family time.
Is it fair to reward doctors’ dedication and commitment, with a threat to their life and limbs?

Ishaan, a student who is pursuing his MBBS degree is aspiring to become a cardiac surgeon.
The current scenario where doctors’ security at their workplace is in danger, has seeded a doubt in Ishaan's mind; whether to pursue medicine in this country or move abroad. Our nation will suffer a wave of massive brain-drain if this alarming trend is not checked in time.

WHO estimates there’s less than 1 Doctor for a population of 1000 people in India which is below the standard norm. With medicine falling out of favour as a preferred profession amongst young career aspirants, a further drop in this number is inevitable and will eventually lead to lack of talent in healthcare industry and suffering for patients, to an extent that, doctors might fear accepting high risk cases.
In the current environment:

  • Doctors are feeling vulnerable
  • Their families are worried about their safety
  • Aspiring doctors are reconsidering their career options
  • The doctor-patient ratio is nowhere close to the WHO standard/norm.

The Problem

At least 19 states, including West Bengal that witnessed the ghastly incident of mob violence against a resident doctor at NRS Medical college, have passed a legislation of an Act that protects doctors. This Act, covering doctors affiliated to institutions as well as independent practitioners, outlaws attacks against physicians and damage to their property. But, such incidents raise a big question on the enforcement & implementation of this act in these 19 states and further the absence of such an act in remaining states.

The Plea

Empathizing with the concerns of Mrs. Verma, Ishaan and countless others like them; Dr. B. Keshav Rao, Head – Medical Strategy & Operations, Fortis Healthcare wishes to channel their concerns towards the safety of doctors, nurses & medical practitioners.

Healthcare is a basic human need. Successive media surveys have found that most Indian hospitals are overworked and understaffed. Health burden in developing nations rests a lot on the public at large because the Governments don’t spend enough, as captured in the World Bank report released on 27th June’2019 ahead of the G20 summit. Caregivers, even with the odds stacked against them, are doing their best that they can in the given circumstances. Violence against doctors will further worsen the already lagging access to healthcare, impacting all of us negatively.

All of us need to come together to create sensitization around the rights of medical practitioners to practice in a safe environment free from coercion, duress and violence from aggrieved patients and their families. It is not hard to understand that the disruption caused by acts of violence against doctors ultimately results in injustice to patients.

You can stop this madness
1) You can make a difference by refusing to share doctor memes and stopping WhatsApp forwards of videos depicting violence against doctors.
2) You can be an agent of positive change by signing this petition seeking strict implementation and enforcement of specific statutes deterring violence against doctors in all Indian states.

With your signature, you shall enable us to forward this petition to the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Ministry of Home Affairs, and Board of Governors of Medical Council of India for enforcement of the Medical Protection Act.