Flash strike by AIIMS nursing staff over night shifts

- April 24, 2022
| By : Judith Mariya Antony |

The nurses union has been demanding that night shift in the main OT should end by 7 pm as in other specialised OTs due to safety concerns while commuting to their homes in NCR

The nursing staff were protesting over the lack of manpower and late duty hours in the main operation theatre (OT). The strike resulted in the cancellation of several planned surgeries. 

On Friday, AIIMS witnessed a altercation between the nursing officer and one of the resident doctor who was sent to resolve the issue.

The administration has issued a memo against the protestors and other nursing union representatives.

“One of the residents went to resolve the issue as a representative from the administration. We have a department of hospital administration, which deals with administrative issues. At that time, there was an altercation. The nursing officer (Mr Harish Kajla) spoke in a very rude manner. He used terms such as ‘aukat’, which was derogatory. He also stated that we are here lifelong and you are only here for three years. All these things undermine the self-respect of doctors. So this has deeply disturbed the Residents’ community”, an RDA member said.

An FIR has reportedly been filed at the Hauz Khas police station by the security section of the institute.

The concerned resident has submitted a detailed description of the incident to the RDA. The association has sent a letter to the Director, explaining the event and stating their demands with video proof. They have demanded the suspension of Kajla, the nursing officer, and a public apology to the concerned resident doctor. 

The RDA member further stated, “The issue nurses have with the administration has nothing to do with us. The issues they must have placed are different. But speaking to a doctor in such a derogatory manner when someone has gone to address the issues and literally abusing him, howling at him is not appropriate.”

The video of the incident has been circulated by the official Twitter handle of RDA.

In a video posted by the official Facebook account of AIIMS Nurses Union, Union President Kajla states, “The flash strike in OT was to regulate the night shift timing of main OT, as many female staff find it difficult to return to their homes; the shift ends late night and this raises safety concerns. The shift ends between 9 to 9.30 pm, female staff from Ghaziabad and other peripheral areas find it hard to travel back during night. These concerns were brought before the administration but they were ignored every time. We initiated the flash strike as the concerns of safety of our female staff weren’t considered. What we wanted was the same timings as Cardio, Neuro or Ortho OT. But no one came to listen to our concerns. Next day, the Medical Superintendent came and said relevant action will be taken. We thought the issue would be solved, but it wasn’t. It is the employer’s responsibility to take care of the employee’s safety concerns. We are ready to talk and solve the issues.”

RDA has scheduled a meeting with the Director to place their demand again and seek resolution from the administration.

According to hospital authorities, OT services have been resumed.

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