The Supreme Court will be hearing on Monday a plea seeking direction to authorities to ensure adequate security at hospitals and medical centres to prevent attack on healthcare workers by patients’ relatives and others.
A bench of Justices S K Kaul and Abhay S Oka is likely to take up the matter tomorrow, PTI reported. The petition read that there have been an increase in the number of attacks on healthcare workers, which include, assaults, verbal abuse and extreme incidents of “public lynching” that had caused deaths among healthcare workers.
The plea filed by the Delhi Medical Association and Dr Satyajit Borah, president of the Assam State Branch of IMA, also seeks directions to Centre and states to set up a distress fund so as to grant compensation to the victims or families of the deceased healthcare workers.
“The petitioners are seeking appropriate directions in the form of guidelines to have a security system in place to ensure a safe working environment for the medical service personnel/ professionals and the health care workers’,” it had said.
“At present, there is no substantial central legislation which has a holistic mechanism of preventive, punitive and compensatory measures which can address the above-mentioned issues of violence against medical service personnel/professionals and the health care workers,” the plea had claimed.
In April this year, following the death of a doctor in Rajasthan allegedly by relatives of patients, a public interest litigation(PIL) was filed in the apex court by Indian Medical Association (Dwarka) seeking comprehensive guidelines for the protection of doctors, and evolving a mechanism to compensate the family and dependents of the deceased doctors.