LAHORE: The prime minister’s office recently ordered the removal of all those doctors from the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences who have been conducting private practice in the hospital and rendering services to patients in a private capacity. The doctors claim that they have not been given their salaries for the past 30 months which is why they had to resort to private services.
The government’s move to remove the doctors will only have a negative effect, as the removal would mean that no patients can be treated in the cardiac centre at the biggest state-owned medical facility in the capital, until and unless the government has a backup plan to deal with the problem or has already decided on new appointees.
Secondly, not regularising the doctors as promised and not paying them, is only going to show the government in a bad light. Though doing private practice within the hospital premises might be an unlawful activity, demanding to be paid and their services regularised are doctors’ due right. Considering that the reports state that practice is being done even by those doctors whose service contract has already expired, it would be rational if the government sets up an inquiry commission and takes strict action against those doctors only.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 14th, 2017.