LAHORE: The Young Doctors Association (YDA) did not call off its strike on Thursday despite a statement made by the Provincial Law Minister Rana Sanaullah on Wednesday night claiming that doctors would return to their duties at emergencies, indoor and out-patient departments at all hospitals.
Though the situation in hospitals has improved, the deadlock between the Punjab government and YDA remains intact. Resuming their duties at the Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC) Lahore, PIC Faisalabad and PIC Multan, the doctors however limited their services to emergency wards only.
Indoor and out-patient departments in hospitals remained open on Thursday but the doctors available there were short in number. A senior doctor while commenting said that the situation despite the hurdles has shown improvement.
Talking to The Express Tribune, General council member YDA Dr Mudassir Razzaq Khan said that the YDA had indeed resumed its duties at some hospitals but added that their services were available only in the emergency wards. He confirmed that the strike by the YDA is still in progress, adding that it will continue till their demands regarding the service structure is accepted by the Punjab government.
Dr Khan further demanded that the government withdraw all cases against doctors as well as releasing and dropping all charges against four, out of the seven doctors, who were arrested.
Speaking at a press conference held at the PIC Lahore, YDA member Dr Zeeshan said that despite the fact that all YDA members of PIC had been freed by the Punjab government, this was not “enough” and that “all doctors detained by the Punjab government should be immediately set free.”
However, a health department spokesperson said that after the recent crisis, the situation was moving towards “normalcy.” He urged all the doctors to return to hospitals and resume their duties.
The Punjab law minister had claimed on Wednesday that the YDA had called off its strike after a meeting, which was held with senior doctors. Sanaullah had claimed that an agreement had been reached according to which the senior doctors had assured the government that the YDA will resume its duties after the release of all detained doctors and dropping of all charges against them .