IMA writes to Health Ministry, supports resident doctors protest, demands fast-tracking of NEET-PG counselling

IMA has written to the union health ministry supporting the junior resident doctors who have been protesting the delay in NEET-PG 2021 counselling

Representative photo
Representative photo

Ashlin Mathew

The Indian Medical Association has written to the union health ministry supporting the junior resident doctors who have been protesting the delay in NEET-PG 2021 counselling. They demanded fast-tracking of the court hearing to expedite the counselling.

The junior doctors’ network of the Indian Medical Association has pointed out that the junior residents are overburdened with work in the face of the imminent third Covid-19 wave and that there were around 50,000 doctors who are waiting to be allotted their earned PG seats amid repeated deferment.

Patient care was affected as resident doctors of all Centre-run and some of the Delhi government-run hospitals boycotted all services, including emergency, as part of the nationwide agitation called by the Federation of Resident Doctors' Association (FORDA).

“The protest will go in till January 6, 2021, until the date of the hearing at the Supreme Court. More than 50,000 doctors are waiting. Their futures are on hold. The workload of doctors who are in the final year and second year PG students have multiplied as the first year students have not entered the course. This makes it difficult for patients and for doctors,” stressed Dr Rahul Anand, convenor of IMA-JDN. He has also given his NEET-PG exams and is waiting for the NEET-PG counselling to begin.

The letter to the health ministry noted that only one-third of the resident workforce remains and as a result, they have been left with no choice but “to intensify the ongoing strike to push further”. IMA underscored that they stood in solidarity with all the resident doctors in the country who have been protesting the delay in NEET-PG counselling.

This IMA letter is in addition to the letter written by the Federation of Resident Doctors’ Association (FORDA) to the presidents of all political parties. In the letter, they have requested political parties to highlight their protest in Parliament during the ongoing winter session. The doctors have been protesting in front of Nirman Bhwan for the second consecutive day.

The resident doctors' associations (RDAs) across the nation have been protesting since November 27 against the multiple postponements of the NEET PG counselling and the subsequent admission of the fresh batch of resident doctors in the medical colleges. The RDAs have boycotted emergency and routine services in hospitals from December 6.

However, the federation announced to suspend its agitation for one week after getting positive assurance from the Health Ministry on December 9. But, when no action was taken by the health ministry in this regard, they resumed their strike on December 17.

Earlier, the general secretary of Safdarjung RDA, Dr Anuj Aggarwal said, “The minister along with a few officials had assured us that within a week the EWS report would be submitted in court and the matter would be taken up on an urgent basis. However, they have not got the case mentioned.”

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