Batra hospital nurses on strike, demand better work conditions
Over 350 nurses of the Batra hospitals went on a strike on Friday to demand better work conditions as per the ‘National Accreditation Board for Hospitals (and Healthcare Providers)’ NABH norms. The strike which started Friday morning saw hundreds of nurses sitting at the gate of the hospital thus affecting patient care.
The nurses have alleged that there is a huge shortage of staff and the nurses are being forced to work overtime. In the bid to have better work conditions the nurses union have put forth some basic demands including maintenance of nurse-patient ratio as per the NABH norms; minimum wages as per the Supreme Court recommendation; curb on sexual discrimination; implementation the maternity leave policy; ESI and insurance coverage, and annual increments and bonuses.
“For a 500 bedded hospital, there is a huge shortage of nurse. We are made to work overtime on most days and are not even paid for the extra working hours that are put in. We are denied basic privileges including salary increments or insurance leading to nurses’ exploitation thus causing mental harassment,” said Sheetal
Malik, Nursing staff.
Nurses have also reiterated that they had put across their demands to the hospital administration over 15 days back but due to total ignorance of their requests, they had no option but to go on an indefinite strike demanding their rights.
“We have taken care of most of their demands and are looking into the remaining requests. We are happy to discuss this with them and make sure that the strike
ends soon as the patients are suffering due to the lack of nurses,” said Vipul Sood, Medical Director, Batra Hospitals. The nurses are demanding that the principle of “same work, same pay” should be implemented, and all benefits including maternity benefits should be made available. “Nurses are being exploited for their work. We will continue our demands until they are heard,” said Lakshmi Kumari, Nursing staff.
Nurses sitting on a strike outside the Batra hospital