PESHAWAR - Patients from far-flung areas suffered at Hayatabad Medical Complex Peshawar as young doctors continued their strike against police baton-charged protesting doctors on Wednesday.

The protesting doctors allegedly forced patients to get out of the hospital after boycotting from their duty while the police resorted to baton-charge when the doctors started disturbing the patients and internal environment of the hospital.

They (doctors) when reached the hospital started locking rooms of the hospital and warned the patients to get out of the hospital as there will be no service in the OPD and wards.

The situation abruptly deteriorated in the hospital when doctors forced the patients to quit the newly established OPD service.

The heavy contingent of the police deployed in the hospital crackdown against the protesting doctors and used teargas and baton charge against the doctors resulted injuring of 13 doctors. Three more doctors were arrested by the police from the hospital after a scuffle broke out with the police.

Talking to The Nation, Noorud Din, an attendant with a patient, said that they came from Shangla for the treatment of his brother, but due to the doctors protest they could not be availed the treatment facilities in the hospital.

He said that they spend Rs14, 000 on a rent car service to shift their patients from Shangla to Peshawar, but unfortunately the doctors are not cooperating with the patient.

Din further said that there was no facility available at the District Headquarters (DHQ) Hospital Shangla where they could visit their patient.

He blamed Amir Muqam and Neghat Orakzi for igniting the doctors on the protest.

On the other hand, Young Doctors Association (YDA) Patron-in-Chief Dr Alamgir said that at least 13 doctors have been injured in the police baton-charge and their boycott would continue in all three major hospitals of the city.

He said that there was a complete boycott of OPD and emergency services in Hayatabad Medical Complex Peshawar.

He said that the hunger-strike camp of the doctor was also underway near the KP Assembly building and they would not end their strike until the government fulfills their demands.

The doctors’ protest was started when they demanded compensation for three doctors who were killed in three separate incidents.

The deceased doctors, identified as Dr Murtaza and Dr Faisal, were killed in a gas leakage incident while another Dr Dawood was killed due to the firing of some unidentified persons.

The doctors also demanded the restoration of the old status of the Post Graduate Medical Institute Peshawar (PGMI) and introducing a uniform policy on health professional allowance.

They also demanded the restoration of the transferred doctors and enactment of laws for doctors’ security.

It is pertinent to mention here that the government has recently increased the allowance and salaries of the doctors in all hospitals of the province and now Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa is on the top list in term of salaries and allowances.

Due to the doctors’ boycott, the patient care facilities in the tertiary care hospitals are badly suffering as patients came from the far-flung areas are still without a proper treatment to avail medical facilities. They (patients) are waiting for the doctors for the last two days in the hospital wards.