BPKIHS staffers halt health services

Dharan, July 15:

Demanding that top officials be appointed in the BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences (BPKIHS) at the earliest, lecturers and staffers of the nursing department of the BPKIHS launched an agitation today.

Sporting black armbands, they staged a four-hour sit-in in front of the hospital.

In a press release, the staff welfare forum of the institute said that nothing had been done for the welfare of the staff even after the revival of democracy, adding they had no alternative but to launch a strong agitation as their demands were not met.

At present, the institute has only a vice-chancellor and registrar. Two important posts — rector and hospital director — have been lying vacant for one-and-a-half years.

The government had removed four top officials, including vice-chancellor Dr Lok Bikram Thapa, who were appointed by the royal regime. Prof Dr Purna Chandra Karmacharya was appointed vice-chancellor in January. Registrar Jalan Kumar Sharma, who

was sued by the Commission for Investigation for Abuse of Authority while in office, has been reinstated.

Airing the demands of the agitating staffers, a lecturer in the nursing department, Shyam Lamsal, said: “Vacancies in the important positions should not hamper hospital

administration.”

Among others, services at the Intensive Care Unit and emergency ward were disrupted after over 400 nurses of the institute launched the agitation. Sunita Rana, an agitating staffer, said the sit-in was shortened by half to four hours taking into account the effect it could have on patients’ lives.

Meanwhile, physicians at the institute also warned that they will also take part in the agitation if top officials are not appointed soon. Issuing a press release, an organisation of the physicians and dentists at the institute denounced the delay in appointments, attributing the delay to political parties’ wrangling.