Patna, Feb 08: Medical services in all government hospitals and primary health centres across Bihar continued to remain suspended as the two-day statewide strike by 4,200 government doctors entered the second day today.
As a result of the strike, which began yesterday midnight and is likely to continue till midnight tonight, medical services have come to a halt in all the 25 odd government hospitals along with about 300 primary health centres. However, emergency wards remained open.
Expressing 'heartfelt sympathy' for severe inconveniences to the patients and their families due to the 48 hour strike, state Health Services Association president Ramnagina Prasad Singh said if the government did not concede to their demands 'soon' the doctors would resort to a statewide 'indefinite strike' from February 21.
''We are left with no other option but to resort to this extreme step to meet our long pending demands, including pay parity with Central government doctors, with retrospective effect,'' Dr Singh said.
Incidentally, blaming the alleged lackadaisical attitudes of the state government in meeting their demands despite a judgement in this regard by the Patna High Court a few years ago, the BSHSA chief said instead of 'sympathetically' considering the demands the Health Minister was trying to divert the public attention to our causes by simply highlighting the earlier government decisions, taken about a decade ago.
''Our repeated pleas to improve the pay structures and other service conditions has so far fallen into deaf their ears, Dr Singh claimed and reiterated the Association's unanimous resolution to go for a possible indefinite strike later this month.
Meanwhile, the outdoor patients in different government hospitals across the state had been facing severe problems as the doctors stayed away from their duties since yesterday.