Kerala's medical services hit after its government doctors were going on 'mass leave' to press their charter of demands.
Outpatient sections in government hospitals functioned with house surgeons manning them, official sources said. The demands included notification on the service and wage conditions of doctors and increase in stipends to postgraduate students on par with their counterparts at national level.
Kerala Government Medical Officers Association (KGMOA) has begun a hunger strike in front of the Secretariat since the past two days against the government's refusal to implement the long-pending demands.
Health Minister VS Shivakumar has said the government would strongly face the agitation. KGMOA President, Dr Pramila Devi, who is staging the hunger strike, said despite government's assurance to find a solution, no steps had been taken in this regard.
There were vacancies of over 1,500 doctors in taluk hospitals which were not being filled, putting pressure on doctors to work longer hours, she said.