New Delhi: The Federation of All India Medical Association (FAIMA), an association of doctors, has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressing concerns about the prevailing “VIP culture” in government hospitals amid the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic in the country.
In a letter to the PM Monday, the association noted that there are separate VIP counters at several Centre-run government hospitals that offer Covid testing only to politicians and ministers.
“But doctors have no separate counter for testing,” the letter read, a copy of which was accessed by ThePrint.
Signed by FAIMA President Dr Rakesh Bagdi, Vice-President Dr Amarnath Yadav and General Secretary Dr Subrankar Datta, the letter detailed how doctors are at the forefront of the Covid-19 pandemic and yet have no facilities available when they test positive for the virus.
“…we wish to inform you that doctors being at the forefront of the epidemic are risking their own lives but what we receive in return is standing in long queues for Covid testing, no bed or ICU availability when tested positive for our own self,” it read.
The association added that “priority is being given to all the so called politicians and party workers who have actually held rallies and increased the spread of virus”.
Manpower in hospitals affected by VIP culture
According to the association, even with a VIP counter, several politicians call doctors to their residence for check-ups and testing.
“Majority of the politicians call doctors at their residence which has no legal order from the medical Superintendent but is carried out informally,” the letter noted.
For this, it added, they call on doctors working in government hospitals, which in turn further reduces and limits the medical manpower available.
Therefore, the association strongly opposed the prevalence of this VIP culture and urged the Prime Minister to “look into the matter seriously”, in the letter.
The second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic has seen a massive surge in cases across the country. In the past 24 hours, India recorded 1,61,736 new Covid cases and 879 deaths.
Vaccinations have been opened up for people over 45 years of age and so far, 10,85,33,085 inoculations have been carried out.
(Edited by Rachel John)