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October 22, 2019

Worst traffic jams after medics block major roads in Lahore


October 22, 2019

LAHORE: The Grand Health Alliance (GHA) protest spilled over into roads on Monday to cause inconvenience for the people after making lives of patients miserable during 12 days’ strike in hospitals across the province.

The Lahore’s major thoroughfares were clogged due to traffic jams after the young doctors, young consultants, nurses, paramedical staff, allied health professionals and all healthcare associations responded GHA’s call to block roads of provincial metropolis.

The protesters from Mayo Hospital blocked Mall Road at GPO Chowk, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital at Queens Road, Services Hospital and Punjab Institute of Cardiology at Jail Road, Children’s Hospital and Lahore General Hospital on Ferozepur Road.

Ambulances carrying patients were stuck in traffic jam while long queues of vehicles were witnessed on Ferozpur Road near General Hospital, Jail road near PIC and Services Hospitals, Fatima Jinnah Road and Mall Road.

Doctors of Mayo Hospital blocked Mall Road near Boota Mahal Road which affected traffic flow badly from Lower Mall to High Court/GPO Chowk. The doctors and paramedical staff of Services Hospital blocked Jail Road from both sides which created load on Canal Road and linking arteries. The doctors of Lahore General Hospital blocked Ferozepur Road and halted operation of Metro Bus. Likewise, the doctors of Sir Ganga Ram Hospital blocked entry of every kind of vehicle on Fatima Jinnah Road. The protest on major roads brought the traffic of the City on standstill position for hours.

City traffic Police chalked out emergency traffic plan and diverted traffic on alternate routes. CTO said protest is right of every person but blocking roads is against morality and the teachings of Islam.

The young doctors and medical staff are holding strike in Out-Patients Department (OPDs) in public sector hospitals across Punjab against, what they called, privatisation of hospitals under Punjab Medical Teaching Institutions (Reforms) Act 2019. They boycotted their duties to perform elective services including outdoor, operation theatres, radiological and pathological services in mega teaching institutions including Mayo Hospital, Services, Hospital, Children’s Hospital, Lahore General Hospital, Jinnah Hospital, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Shaikh Zayed Hospital, Punjab Institute of Cardiology in Lahore as well as other districts across the province.

The GHA takes strong exception to threatening and outrageous statements of Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid, which has created outrage and unrest among doctors, nurses, paramedics and health professionals.

The miseries of the poor patients are continuously increasing due to lack of healthcare services in outdoor wards and OTs in hospitals of Punjab. Several patients have to go to the private hospitals for elective procedures, which puts extra financial burden on the poor patients.

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