BIRDEM doctors continue sit-in

Staff Correspondent | Published: 01:32, Jun 30,2020


Temporary medical officers of BIRDEM General Hospital on Monday continued staging sit-in in front of the hospital for the second consecutive day demanding full payment, safety equipment and job security.

Over hundred doctors also formed a human chain in front of the hospital demanding for regularising their jobs.

Meanwhile, the hospital authorities in the afternoon instructed that demonstrating doctors to join their ‘training’ within 24 hours, or their trainings will be considered incomplete.

The medical officers, however, expressed surprise with the instruction saying that the written instruction was confusing since they were working at BIRDEM as temporary doctors and were receiving regular fixed payments, but now the hospital authorities were addressing them as trainees.

The doctors said that they staged sit-in and human chain from 8:00am to 2:30pm on the day and determined to continue their protest until their demands were met.

The medical officers started their protest from Sunday morning. Some agitating doctors said that they had not been given enough personal protective equipment for treating COVID-19 patients and most of them were yet to be regularised despite rendering services to the hospital for up to three years.

They also complained that they were getting Tk 10,000 less payment for last two months and they also had a reduction in their previous Eid bonus.

The Foundation for Doctors’ Safety Rights and Responsibilities joint secretary Rahat Anwar Chowdhury said that they had expressed solidarity with the agitated doctors.

The agitated doctors said that they proposed a five-point demand which included scrapping the post of resident medical officer, regularisation of jobs, supply of quality PPE, treatment for infected doctors and their families, and announcement of incentives of Tk 10 lakh for the family if a doctor dies of COVID-19.

BIRDEM General Hospital director general Quayyum Chowdhury said that the demonstrators were mainly trainees who participated in training programme at the hospital for few years and later might apply for permanent job there.

‘They are not temporary medical officers, rather are trainees. We are sympathising with many of their demands, except job regularising. We cannot act beyond the system and the hospital’s board of management also decided against it,’ the DG told New Age.

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