The Delhi High Court on Monday suggested to the authorities to appoint a Nodal Officer to redress grievances of healthcare workers and to act as a window system where nurses can raise their issues like non-availability of safety gear.
"A Nodal Officer may be appointed who can act as a single-window system where nurses can air their grievances like non-availability of PPE etc. This officer can get replies from the government and then respond to the nurses," said a division bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan.
The bench also directed the government to seek undertakings from private nursing homes and hospitals to appropriate authority regarding supply of PPE kits and other safety equipment to the nurses and other healthcare workers.
The court also suggested to the Centre and Delhi government if the nurses could get benefit under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY) at least for a limited period like the pandemic period.
The suggestion came while the court was hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) that claimed to highlight the blatant violation of human rights of the nurses and other healthcare workers deployed in the forefront of private nursing homes or hospitals in Delhi.
The court also asked the Delhi government to come up with a helpline or WhatsApp number wherein nurses could get their complaints redressed.
Following these observations, the counsel appearing for the Centre and the state government sought time from the court to take instructions from authorities concerned. The matter will now be heard on July 17.
On the previous date of hearing, both the governments submitted their responses to the prayers made in the petition.
As for psychological support to the healthcare staff, the AAP government responded that such counselling is being provided to the front-line corona workers.
Recently, the Delhi government launched "Samvaad" in collaboration with the Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS) wherein proper counselling would be provided to the front-line workers against stress and other situations.
The plea said that during these testing times, the worst-hit are the nurses who are giving care to the patients without personal protective equipment, N-95 mask, gloves etc, especially in private nursing homes and hospitals in Delhi and other parts of the country.
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