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AIIMS Patna doctors threaten to go on strike amid COVID-19 pandemic

They list out a number of demands, citing risks of working due to surge in cases

PATNA: At a time when COVID-19 cases are surging in Bihar, resident doctors at All India Institute of Medical Sciences Patna have threatened to go strike from May 24 if their demands are not met by hospital authorities.

AIIMS Patna is a premier hospital in the State capital for people infected with COVID-19.

The doctors had earlier demanded 20-22 beds in the COVID-19 ward and two or three at the ICU to be reserved for them and their family members.

“Besides, as per Central guidelines, we also had demanded to have a facility of eight days in quarantine period after eight days of COVID-19 duty”, said president of AIIMS Patna doctors association Vinay Kumar.

Dr. Kumar said he informed the hospital director P.K. Singh about the association’s decision through a letter.

“The doctors at AIIMS Patna attend to 50-60 COVID-19 patients daily, which increases chances of their infection, so we’ve been raising our demands for nearly a month but to no avail”, Dr. Kumar added.

Interns’ demands

Medical interns at Patna’s Indira Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences (IGIMS) too have demanded that health insurance and COVID-19 allowance be given to them.

“Apart from basic stipend, we should be given COVID-19 allowance too”, said the agitating interns. However, the issue was later sorted out by the IGIMS administration.

Meanwhile, the State government is likely to notify mucormycosis (black fungus) as an epidemic in the State, with 14 new cases of black fungus detected in Bihar on Friday. The State has a total of 117 patients with symptoms of mucormycosis.

Bihar, so far, has reported 6,81,100 new COVID-19 positive cases with total 49,311 active cases and 4,339 deaths. The recovery rate in the State is 92.12%.

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