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On Tuesday, clinics and private hospitals were closed in Punjab because approximately 10,000 doctors launched a protest under the banner of the Punjab chapter of IMA, insisting on the rollback of the Punjab Clinical Establishment Ordinance, 2020.
Naming the order “anti-doctor” and “anti-public”, the protesters have claimed that the government was trying to control the private healthcare sector with this ordinance.
Rakesh Wig, chairman of the joint action committee of the Indian Medical Association (IMA) Punjab branch said that almost 10,000 doctors in Punjab kept complete bandh in the state and all facilities were closed.
Last month, the Punjab government had notified the Punjab Clinical Establishment (Registration and Regulation) Act, 2020 and it was applicable to all clinical institutions who have more than 50 beds. It will provide for registration and regulation of these clinical establishments to make sure compliance with clinical standards and protocols. The government had then claimed that it would also see the transparency in the functioning of these clinical establishments for proper delivery of health services to the public.
The doctors said that the ordinance will be effective from 1st July 2020. The disturbed doctors said there wasn’t any need for this law as they were already been regulated by the Punjab Medical Council and other laws.
Wig said that there was no need of bringing such law. They are already helping the state government in fighting against COVID -19 and instead, bringing in such a law. He said that this law will promote Inspector Raj and corruption. The doctors also claimed that with this law, there would be needless interfering of the government in private hospitals. The protesting doctors also said that treatment costs would also increase with the implementation of this order. They also claimed that they are serving almost to 70 per cent of the state’s population.
The doctors said that while demanding the ordinance be rolled back that the government should emphasis more on improving healthcare facilities in all government-owned hospitals, instead of imposing such an ordinance.