Srinagar: J&K RTI Movement on Thursday urged the government to ensure the safety of healthcare professionals who are working at the frontline to combat Covid-19 crisis, saying this infection cannot be stopped without protecting healthcare workers first. “J&K RTI Movement appreciates the role of front line Medico’s/ workers who are taking up the responsibility to combat Covid-19 and we thank them for all their support in the trying times,” the statement said. Dr Shaikh Ghulam Rasool, chair of J&K RTI Movement said, “We are deeply concerned as the preparations of government are patchy and slow due to inadequate health services, lack of staff and infrastructure and planning – which is putting the frontline Medico’s/ workers and their families in danger.”
Dr Shaikh urged the government to provide all necessary technical and operational support to respond to the outbreak and protection of healthcare workers as the foremost priority. “There is a need to immediately come up with: Necessary financial packages to meet the medical emergency; and ensure dedicated allocation of funds to the health sector in view of Cobid-19, a segregated component to procure and provide adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) kits to the health, sanitation and other frontline personnel, supply chain management by having a robust system in place to ensure quality and quantity of PPE kits, testing kits and medicines wherever needed,” the statement said.
It added, “It is the responsibility of the government to provide: Wages of healthcare workers should be paid as per existing norms, with extra hours remunerated and risk allowance covered, especially of doctors and paramedics, special paid leaves in case of Cobid-19 related sickness and quarantine to be provided, suitable accommodation for doctors and paramedics working on Covid-19 related health issues with food and other logistics covered so as to prevent their families from danger.”