New Delhi: Public health experts have sought higher budgetary allocation in the health sector to upgrade the hospital infrastructure, ensure proper working conditions and check violence against the medical fraternity, reports suggest. The proposal was made on Doctors’ Day which falls on July 1 during a panel discussion organised by the AIIMS Front.

The event was conducted to inculcate ‘Social Consciousness’ on the campus of the country’s premier medical institution especially at a time when incidents of assault on doctors are on the rise. For instance, doctors at the North Delhi Municipal Corporation-run Hindu Rao hospital have been protesting since Sunday after two of their colleagues were allegedly beaten up the previous night by relatives of a patient, who died at the facility.

Professor at Emergency Medicine, Dr LR Murmu stressed on the necessity on higher funding in the health sector and a strong political will to address issues like shortage of manpower and infrastructure.

“The solutions to check such cases of violence that have emerged from the current debates highlight the need for upgrading the health infrastructure and recruitment of more doctors to reduce the doctor-patient gap,” said Dr Murmu. He added that if higher funding is not allocated then there will a shortage of beds and overcrowding.

Murmu also said, “Resident doctors should make patients a part of their movement. The idea is simple — it is only when the doctors would feel safe and secure, that they would be able to provide better treatment.”

Stressing on the need for proper working conditions for resident doctors, Dr Vijay Gurjar, an assistant professor in the Department of Geriatric Medicine at AIIMS said, “They are the main working force of any hospital and have to bear all the burnt from the teachers as well as patients. We as faculty members have to take care of our residents as our kids.”

Talking about the need to have a better relationship with patients, Gurjar said, “We must ensure that they are getting enough time to relax and rejuvenate. Let’s pledge on this Doctors’ Day that we will not torture our juniors and will build a healthy relationship with them that in turn will help them develop a better relationship with patients as well.”

The doctors also sought strict implementation of central residency scheme in all hospitals, enactment of a Central protection law to make violence against doctors a non-bailable offence and establishment of a central medical tribunal to specially take up medical cases on priority.

(With inputs from PTI)