Doctors, nurses and staffers at Mechi Hospital in Jhapa district have staged a protest for not receiving risk allowance pledged by the government for those working in the frontline in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Irate health workers today wore black arm bands in a symbolic protest. According to Dr Lenin Pokharel, a doctor at the hospital, the protesting health workers will be wearing the arm band until September 8. They have not got their allowance for five months, according to Dr Pokharel.

Application has been submitted to the provincial government, local administration and the hospital management committee for immediate release of the allowance.

“We have been risking our lives to provide health care services to patients, both COVID-19-infected and non-infected during this pandemic. But we have not received any incentive as pledged,” bemoaned Dr Pokharel.

If their demands go unheard till September 8, they said that they would close all the services at the hospital.

The hospital’s medical superintendent Dr Pitambar Thakur said that application had been sent to the Ministry of Social Affairs at the end of fiscal year 2019-20.

He was hopeful that health workers would be provided risk allowance very soon. Hospital Development Committee Chair Somnath Portel, however, said he was unaware of this matter. (RSS)