Ordinance on cards to ensure safety of health workers: Health Minister

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Kollam: Health minister Veena George condemned the murder of a house surgeon at Kottarakkara taluk hospital by a teacher here on Wednesday. Expressing grief and shock over the doctor’s death, the minister noted that Kerala can no longer tolerate such attacks on health workers. Addressing the media here, she said that the government will bring an ordinance to ensure the safety of the health workers in the state.

“The government introduced Kerala Healthcare Service Persons and Healthcare Service Institutions (Prevention of Violence and Damage to Property) Act 2012 to prevent violence against doctors, hospitals and other health workers. We summoned a meeting of doctors’ associations to strengthen this act because of the attacks on doctors. The government has already decided to issue an ordinance after holding talks with various associations of health workers,” said the minister reacting to the media’s question on the government’s efforts to check such violence against doctors on duty.

The government has planned to strengthen the surveillance system in hospitals by installing more CCTV cameras, she added.

She expressed shock over the incident which took place amid the security of the police. “Police aid post is operatioal in Kottarakkara taluk hospital. Health workers including CMO were also present when the attack took place. The doctor who was on duty was not an experienced person. She was terrified when the accused unleashed violence in the hospital. The man attacked the doctor when she fell down while trying to escape from him. The incident is deeply saddening,” the minister said.

The minister pointed out that the LDF government always took a strong stance on violence against health workers. Veena George said a decision on procedures to be followed while treating inebriated persons will be taken after detailed discussions.

Kottayam native Vandana Das (25), who was working as a house surgeon at Kottarakkara taluk hospital, was murdered by a school teacher while being treated. She suffered six wounds in the attack which took place early on Wednesday. She breathed her last while undergoing treatment at KIMS Hospital in Thiruvananthapuram.

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