Fillip must come

The health services are crippled at various times hospitals because of health workers being manhandled by kin of patients who accuse the doctors and other health personnel of negligence. The health workers citing lack of security bring medical services to a standstill in protest. Medical services have once again been disrupted at BP Koirala Institute of Health Science (BPKIHS) in Dharan since Tuesday after two doctors were roughed up by the relatives of accident victims who accused the doctors of not acting urgently. This is not an isolated incident but has been going on for sometime now, in fact, the hospital was also a scene to such less than two weeks back, after a similar incident. Many patients come to BPKIHS for treatment, which is the largest medical services provider in the eastern region. The Out Patient

Department (OPD) of the hospital caters to about 3,000 patients every day. The closure of this hospital, therefore, causes immense hardships to patients who visit the hospital, and many come there from

remote areas for treatment. The frequent closure

of this hospital thus has deprived many patients

from health services.

Time and again the Government has been assuring the health workers that they would be provided with adequate security. But, despite this, due to the lapse of security or its absence, the doctors and other health personnel come under physical assault, although for the most they are not to be blamed and doing their job in the best way they can. The Government’s repeated assurance that the culprits would be punished severely appears to have little effect going by the number of assaults on health workers who are doing their duty sincerely. No doubt, there may be occasions when the health services provided have actually been slipshod or negligent, but such cases are not commonplace. Meanwhile, BPKIHS has witnessed numerous incidents of strikes and manhandling of physicians. It was just recently that a number of physicians had tendered their resignations, but returned to duty after assurances from the administration that they would provide them with the necessary security, but as the recent attack on the physician duo shows incidents of relatives of patients misbehaving with the doctors are continuing without any let up.

Clearly, the disgruntled doctors are apprehensive about their security, and the fear of physical assaults on them lingers on. We can understand that relatives of patients become emotional when they feel that their patient is not being provided with proper treatment or even neglected, as the case may be. Under the circumstances, everyone should understand that the health service providers are doing their best, and they have no malevolent intent as they are alleged of having by the kin of the patients. So, it is high time that a strategy was devised for guaranteeing the security of health workers working in the hospitals, which would mean beefing up security there that would be foolproof so that things do not go out of hand. The common man should also understand the plight of the doctors and that they too are humans and not infallible, and they too could have their shortcomings.

Tough chips

Potato the vegetable king has its lovers in a quandary as what to resort to with its price reaching the sky. A few per cent increase may seem like something usual, but multiples of ten per cent sees the consumers bogged down and having to forego the item that provides the most gastronomic delight among those in the vegetable kingdom. Well, for one thing the vagaries of the weather may be blamed for the shortfall in its production. But, the hoarders too have contributed in their own way to make a quick buck citing low production, shortage and the like. In all this, the government and its line agencies are hardly to be seen monitoring the market and the commodity prices. It’s only once in a while that a few officials turn up at the stockiest to take stock of the situation. Action, more often than not, is nought.

The hapless consumers can do nothing but vent ire vocally amongst themselves for the lack of a strong consumers’ forum. It’s either to do without the tuber, or dole out the hard-earned money to include it

in the menu. Though a frontrunner in the price

race, all the participants from the vegetable

family are doing well to dampen the spirit of the consumers unrelentingly.