Scores of senior resident doctors, who completed their MD (master in medicine) degree course from government medical colleges in Karnataka, have been put on compulsory COVID-19 duty for a year. However, since their tenure started in September, the senior resident doctors said they have not paid their monthly salary. They have been posted for COVID-19 duty in medical colleges and hospitals run by the Karnataka government.
The situation is true for more than 15 hospitals and medical colleges, especially those in rural areas away from Bengaluru. More than 1,000 MD graduates have been posted in government medical colleges, district and taluk-level hospitals as senior resident doctors or senior specialist doctors.
â€śFor the last three months, we have been forced to depend on our families for a living, even after working for long hours. Some hospitals have been providing free accommodation for senior resident doctors, while others have to pay their own accmmodation. Not everybody who finished our courses are from affluent families,â€ť a senior resident doctor from Mandya told TNM.
Another senior resident doctor based in Shivamogga said that the situation is the same in other districts like Shivamogga, Mandya, Chamarajanagar or Gadag. â€śWe have not been paid since we started our duty in September. On Tuesday, we were orally assured by our superiors that our dues will be cleared by next week. In some taluk hospitals, they have been told that they will be paid only in January,â€ť he said.
â€śWe have been promised only Rs 60,000 monthly remuneration, which is one of the lowest in the country, while many other states give doctors Rs 1 lakh per month. Among the 19 medical colleges where the senior resident doctors have been posted, only four medical colleges have paid them. No taluk hospitals have paid the senior resident doctors,â€ť added the doctor from Shivamogga.
These senior resident doctors have given their representation to their respective deans and superintendents. They will also write to the Health Minister and other relevant officials to clear their dues.