Bihar Health Minister Mangal Pandey on Wednesday, May 6 said that doctors, who are absent from their duties amid the COVID-19 crisis, need to be made aware of the rules. As per reports, the minister added that healthcare workers are at the forefront in fighting against the coronavirus pandemic and they must take the situation more seriously.
"We are fighting an invisible enemy in the form of coronavirus. The whole world is fighting against this invisible enemy. Doctors and paramedical staffs are our warriors in this fight,” Pandey told ANI.
He further said that the Bihar Government is supporting them by giving a bonus salary to all doctors and medical staff.
"We have the utmost respect for our warriors in this pandemic. We talked to them and it was felt that there was a need to make them aware of the rules, hence we took this decision. This is not right that some doctors are absent from their duty in this situation. They have to understand the situation. They have been informed by the department," he added.
Earlier in the day, the Bihar government cancelled all kinds of leaves (except maternity leave and study leave) of all medical officers, nurses, paramedics, and Grade 4 staff till May 31. The decision has been taken in light of the necessity to monitor and maintain alertness in order to contain the spread of COVID-19.
The decision was taken after the State Health Society found that 362 doctors across 37 districts in the state were absent from their duty in hospitals despite the COVID-19 crisis.
"After timely monitoring of health officers' presence in the hospital by the State Health Society, it was found that except Katihar, 362 doctors in 37 districts were absent from their duty following which the State Health Society has sought action against all the health officers under Disaster Management Act 2005 and Epidemic Disease Act 1897 for their negligence," an offical statement mentioned.
(With agency inputs; Image Credits - Twitter/@mangalpandeybjp)