To protect doctors and caregivers from facing violence at the hands of patients’ kins and attendants, the government is reportedly planning a law to make such incidents a non-bailable offence.
The Times of India reported, quoting sources, that an inter-ministerial committee, which was formed in 2015 to ensure the safety of medical professionals, has suggested the health ministry initiate the process to bring a central act on the issue.
Some states already have such rules in place, but the absence of stringent laws makes efficient implementation difficult. In June 2016, the Bombay High Court too pointed out there were not enough security arrangements for resident doctors in Mumbai’s hospitals while asking the state to take immediate steps to post police personnel outside hospitals.
According to estimates put out by the Indian Medical Association, 75 per cent of doctors across the country are reported to have faced at least some form of violence, usually over advanced payment or withholding the deceased’s body in case of non-payment. According to the report, the proposed law may also put more responsibilities on the hospital authorities to ensure safety and security of doctors and paramedical staff.
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