Objectionable working and residing conditions of Medical officers
Presently the doctors working at PHC,s (Primary Health Centre) at village level as medical officers are forced to live at headquarters. Some places are even not have any hotels or food facilities to eat. Quarters made available are not according to the norms of Class 1 officers. Villages have problems regarding continue electric supply, water supply, good education and other things to maintain standard of living. Government is paying salary but money is useless unless it can be used to maintain standard of living. Many PHC's have security issues too. For many needs they have to go to district places and after their working hours they have very scarce transport available to do so. They even not get fruits and vegetables on daily basis at village level.
By forcing to live at headquarters government is in fact decreasing the current living standard of doctors.
1. Is this doing of government not against Article 47 of constitution which states that Primary duty of government is to raise the standard of living and against article 43 of constitution which ensures a decent standard of life and enjoyment of leisure and social and cultural responsibilities?
How can a doctor have good standard by educating their children in Zila parishad schools or not having proper food and nutrition or bad electric or water supply or bad internet services? In fact now a days vegetables and fruits are costlier at village level than in cities.
2. Doctors are forced to live at the headquarter to attend emergencies. My question is that whether to be present to attend emergency patients is considered as duty hours or not?
If yes, then can doctor take leave after 24 hrs of duty?
If no, how can a doctor do the duty next day if he was attending four emergency patients whole night at a gap of 2 hrs ?
3. Can he/she deny to live at headquarter if there is lack of availability of any registered hotels or their is lack of proper electric supply or water supply ?
4. No class 1 officers of any department live at the village levels and face such problems. Is it not against equal conditions of work according to Class 1 ranking too. Other officers are enjoying a good standard of living while doctors are not ?
Are all these questions are objectionable according to law or not.
Asked in Labour from Yavatmal, Maharashtra
All the questions you have raised valid and I vet the same without demure.
Since the questions involved are intricate involving larger public interest I think you can raise this issue by way of filing public interest litigation.
If you are a medical professional then you have necessary locus standi to file such case.
All the best.
1) you can complaint to director health services regarding the pitiable living conditions of doctors working for PMC without adequate water , electricity , food and accommodation
2) it is not possible for docctor to do duty next day if he has been awake all night performing operations
3) doctor should be entitled to adequate rest after duty hours
4) authorities should make adequate arrnagements of water , eclectricity to enbale doctors to perform their duty
5) if no action is taken by the government file writ petition in bombay HC and seek orders to direct govt to take remedial action by providing adequate accommodation , water , electricity supply to doctor working for PMC
1. The conditions in which medical officers operate are indeed pitiable. This is attributable to lack of a strong association of the medical fraternity.
2. It goes without saying that this goes against the spirit of articles 14, 47 and 43. The remedy is to file a PIL in the High Court.
3. To attend emergency patients is also a part of duty and duty hours.
4. A doctor cannot though violate the rules by refusing to live at headquarters. They should rather take recourse to their remedies under the law,
This is a persisting problem faced by medical officers who are forced to work with PHCs in not only remote villages but generally in rural sectors.
Any individual representations to rectify this lacuna or provide the minimum basic standard of life with basic and moderate amenities will go into the deaf ears of the authorities.
The matter can be raised collectively by all affected and supported by those who are not affected, before the governmental authorities and this step if fails to invoke a positive response, a PIL may also be organised to be filed before high court seeking relief and remedy.
To reside in headquarters and to be continuously employed to attend emergencies are part of the duties .of medical attendants/doctors, they cannot protest this based on the absence of provision of proper standard of living by government, however legal recourse is always available in the event of persistent grievances.
Doctors working in PHCs are also human beings and government servants hence they are entitled to all the privileges and amenities that are available to all other government staff, hence it is the responsibility of the government/authority to provide them the same which is in conformation the basic and standard living conditions as per provisions of law.
You may take up the matter collectively by organizing all those affected to stand in your side for a joint demand to redress the grievances.