LAHORE - Health care providers continued strike at the OPDs of public sector hospitals across the province including Lahore on 19th day on Monday to protest against the Punjab Medical Teaching Institutions (Reforms) Act 2019, causing huge inconvenience to visiting patients.  On the call of Grand Health Alliance (GHA), young doctors, young consultants, nurses, paramedical staff and allied health professionals from Services Hospital and Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC) blocked Jail Road at noon, causing massive traffic jam for hours. Patients faced huge difficulties in reaching the health facilities due to blockage by the protesters. Even ambulances carrying patients were stuck in traffic jam. Carrying placards and banners inscribed with their demands, the protesters chanted slogans against the government. The GHA announced to continue OPDs strike and warned the government of extending strike to indoor wards if the legislation was not withdrawn. The young doctors and allied staff are holding strike at OPDs against the government plan of ‘privatization of hospitals’. They stayed away from duties at OPDs, operation theatres, radiological and pathological labs at teaching hospitals including Mayo Hospital, Services Hospital, Children’s Hospital, Lahore General Hospital, Jinnah Hospital, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Shaikh Zayed Hospital, PIC in Lahore as well as other districts across the province. The miseries of the poor patients are continuously increasing due to lack of healthcare services in outdoor wards and OTs in hospitals of Punjab. Patients have to go to the private hospitals for elective procedures, which puts extra financial burden on the poor patients. However, the authorities claimed provision of health facilities at OPDs with the help of consultants and administrative doctors.