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Coronavirus news - live: India’s medical body to protest violence against doctors, demand better protection

·1-min read
Doctors and medical workers inside an isolation centre in Noida, India, on 23 May, 2021. (Getty Images)
Doctors and medical workers inside an isolation centre in Noida, India, on 23 May, 2021. (Getty Images)

India’s top medical association has called for a nationwide protest today against assaults on doctors after hundreds of cases of violence against healthcare workers were reported throughout the country during the second wave of Covid-19.

The Indian Medical Association is demanding a central law that protects doctors from violence. It said over 350,000 doctors are expected to join the protest on Friday.

Medical services will not be stopped, and doctors will wear black badges or masks to join the protest, it said.

This comes after a doctor in Assam was assaulted by the relatives and friends of a Covid-19 patient who died at a healthcare facility.

Dr Jayesh Lele, general secretary of IMA, told The Times of India that there were about 300 cases of violence against doctors and healthcare practitioners in 2020. He said the violence increased as the second wave of the pandemic hit the country, overwhelming the medical system.

Meanwhile, India reported 62,480 new Covid-19 infections over the 24 hours ending Friday morning, taking the overall tally to 29.7 million. 1,587 deaths were reported in the past 24 hours, and the fatalities now stand at 383,490.

Coronavirus-related deaths globally have passed a grim milestone of 4 million, according to a Reuters tally. While it took over a year for the Covid-19 death toll to hit 2 million, the next 2 million were recorded in 166 days.

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