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Karnataka High Court Seeks Report On Steps Taken For Prevention Of Violence Against Medical Professionals

Mustafa Plumber
30 July 2021 8:03 AM GMT
Karnataka High Court Seeks Report On Steps Taken For Prevention Of Violence Against Medical Professionals
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The Karnataka High Court on Thursday directed the State government to place on record steps taken for protection of medical practitioners from acts of violence by dissatisfied relatives of patients. A division bench of Chief Justice Abhay Oka and Justice NS Sanjay Gowda issued notice to the Union of India and the State Government while hearing a petition filed by Dr. Vinod G...

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The Karnataka High Court on Thursday directed the State government to place on record steps taken for protection of medical practitioners from acts of violence by dissatisfied relatives of patients.

A division bench of Chief Justice Abhay Oka and Justice NS Sanjay Gowda issued notice to the Union of India and the State Government while hearing a petition filed by Dr. Vinod G Kulkarni. The court said "Steps taken for protection of medical practitioners shall be placed on record along with the statement of objections."

The petition states that Doctors swear and abide by the historical Hippocratic oath and no doctor intentionally harms any patient. However, ever since the onset of Covid-19 pandemic there has been an alarming rise in cases of violence against doctors and health care professionals throughout India.

The plea thus says "Protection of doctors and all the health care workers against any kind of violence or attack or damage to the hospital property is the prime duty of the state and the Union of India." It further states that a treating doctor if subjected to cruelty, violence, atrocity or bodily injury to himself or his staff, tantamount to violation of Article 21 of the Constitution.

Therefore, a direction is sought to ensure that security/police personnel are posted at all hospitals which have a minimum strength of 10 indoor beds. Further, it is prayed that a police officer not below the rank of a head constable should daily visit the hospitals located in the jurisdiction to make enquiries of any mishaps created by patients or the relatives of the patients.

A further direction is sought to appoint a Joint Expert Committee headed by a retired High Court judge to address the grievances of the treating doctors.

"Many doctors who are termed as Covid-19 warriors have themselves succumbed to the deadly virus while they were diligently serving to save the lives of such Covid-19 patients," the plea highlights.

The matter will be next heard on August 19.

A similar petition was filed by the Delhi Medical Association (DMA) before the Supreme Court, seeking protection of health practitioners. The plea seeks guidelines to have a 24X7 security system in place to ensure safe working environment for the said category of persons. In this regard it is suggested that the health department of every State Government may develop a distress alert software though which the vulnerable medical professionals can send SOS signal to the nearest Police stations.

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