Medical services at the VN Desai Hospital in Mumbai was affected as doctors and staff went on a flash strike on October 9, after a politician verbally abused a medico for not admitting a patient. Several patients were turned away from the hospital throughout the day.
Medical services were resumed only in the evening after civic officials lodged a police complaint against local BJP corporator Mahesh Parkar for allegedly hurling abuses and making allegations of bribery against the casualty medical officer (CMO) on October 8 evening.
Relatives of Prem Gupta (15) had informed Parkar that the doctors were not admitting him, despite the boy running a high fever. The family members said that someone had informed the doctors that the boy could be suffering from dengue and hence wanted the boy to be hospitalized.Prem visited the hospital thrice since October 7 and the doctors would administer medicines and send him home. The next day Prem suffered from several bouts of vomiting, as said by Prem's father Lalchand. "We rushed him to the hospital. The doctor again injected some medicines and told us to take him home. The doctor advised a blood test to be carried out on October 13 while he has been suffering from high fever since Monday. We were told to seek the services of a private lab if we wanted the diagnosis soon," he said.
Parkar said poor patients have a tough time finding bed in the peripheral hospitals. Doctors at VN Desai, however, said politicians routinely try to interfere with the functioning of the hospital. The boy was admitted to hospital and his blood samples were collected on October 9.