Govt. doctors in Central Province on strike
Following assault incident involving provincial MinisterAugust 4, 2012, 6:07 pm
By Franklin R. Satyapalan and Jayakody Ratnayake
Medical services at government hospitals in the Central Province came to a grinding halt yesterday after doctors struck work following a provincial Minister allegedly intimidating a senior medical official and assaulting a consultant.
Around 2,000 doctors belonging to the GMOA in the region walked out after Central Provincial Health Minister Sunil Kithsiri Amaratunga is alleged to have intimidated the province’s Director of Health, Dr. Mrs Shanthi Samarasinghe and assaulted Epidemiology Consultant and Community Medicine Physician, Dr. Sapumal Dhanapala, medical officials said.
Thousands of patients who turned up for treatment at government hospitals in the province were affected as work came to a complete standstill, they said.
GMOA General Secretary, Dr Chandika Epitakaduwa said a special meeting of the executive committee has been summoned for 12 noon tomorrow to decide on alternative action in case the Police dragged their feet in arresting the suspect Minister.
Police media spokesman, SP Ajith Rohana said that the suspect had surrendered to the Kandy police yesterday evening and investigations are continuing.
GMOA sources in the province said the incident had occurred on the second floor office of the building housing the Central Provincial Health Ministry, where the two doctors had called over to meet the Minister around 3.45 pm on Friday.
The doctor injured in the assault has been admitted to the Kandy General Hospital. GMOA members in the Kandy, Matale and Nuwara Eliya districts in the Central Province kept away from their normal duties since yesterday morning in protest. However, the Emergency Ward and Intensive Care Unit (ICU) were functional on humanitarian grounds, GMOA sources said
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