OPD patients suffer due to doctors’ protest

Karachi: Hundreds of patients visiting the Outpatient Department (OPD) in Abbasi Shaheed Hospital (ASH) in Karachi were denied healthcare services on Wednesday as doctors boycotted their duties to protest the murder of their colleague.

The OPD services one of major hospital of the city remained suspend for two hours from 9 to 11 pm in Wednesday morning to condemn the brutal murder of renowned pathologist and Dean of Medicine at Karachi Medical & Dental College (KMDC), Prof Javed Iqbal Qazi.

Hospital sources told PPI that the call of boycott was given against the apathy of government and law-enforcement agencies in providing safety and security of medical professionals. They said the two hour-protest would continue in the hospital till 22th February on daily basis and future line of action would be announced next week in this regard. They said the hospital would’ however, continue to provide emergency services as usual.

They said OPD services were suspended to express solidarity with the doctor fraternity and demanding their protection from government, adding doctors would not be able to continue their service at hospitals and clinics unless effective measures are taken in this regard.

They said Prof Dr Javed Qazi was shot at the main gate of KMDC on 17th February 2014 but still his killers are not arrested. The doctors are being killed, kidnapped and harassed by extortion mafia in Sindh province and authorities concerned have failed to protect the medical fraternity. The situation has been persisting since a long time and has created a sense of fear and unrest in the society in general and the doctor fraternity in particular, they said.

However, the boycott of doctors caused great inconvenience to the visiting patients, especially who came from the far-off areas. They returned home without their check-ups and diagnostic tests due to the strike.

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