July 10, 2008

Doctors’ Protest Closes Non-Emergency Medical Services Across Nepal

Excerpt from report by Nepalese eKantipur.com website on 10 July

Kathmandu, [Thursday] 10 July: The entire health institutions except emergency services have been shut down across the country on Thursday due to the strike called by the doctors. The Nepal Medical Association (NMA) have called for a nationwide strike in all governmental and non governmental health institutions on Thursday, demanding proper security.

Medical facilities across the country has not provided service except emergency, objecting to the protest being carried out by the family and relatives of Narayan Shah. Shah, who was shifted to Bir Hospital after undergoing surgery at Everest Nursing Home for removal of a [kidney] stone, died at Bir. His family and relatives have been protesting against the nursing home and [name omitted], the surgeon, alleging that the hospital and the doctor were negligent when treating Shah.

In a statement issued yesterday, the NMA said: "We have decided to carry out a nationwide protest - with a closedown of all services at medical institutions except emergency - against the attack at Everest Nursing Home and a doctor."

However, police have not reported any vandalism at Everest. The family and relatives started a peaceful sit-in protest in front of the nursing home from Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health has invited the agitating doctors for talks and has urged to withdraw strikes.

Everest Nursing Home was shut down from Saturday claiming that no mistake was committed in Shah's treatment. They have been staging demonstrations stating the compensation as demanded by Shah's relatives cannot be provided.

[The protest began with the closure of all non-emergency medical services in Kathmandu on 9 July.]

Originally published by eKantipur.com website, Kathmandu, in English 10 Jul 08.

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