At least 15 patients died after more than 500 junior doctors at the Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH) here went on a strike to protest an assault by a deceased patient's attendants, hospital officials said on Friday.
"Fifteeen critical patients died due to lack of treatment after the doctors went on strike on Thursday night, which also hit Emergency and Out Patient Department services in the last 20 hours," an official said.
"So far, 36 surgeries have been deferred and dozens of patients refused admission."
Officials said hundreds of patients and their attendants were at loss as to whom to turn to for treatment.
"Dozens of patients, battling for life, have been forced to shift to private hospitals and nursing homes by their families."
The junior doctors are demanding adequate security and action against attendants of the patient who attacked their colleagues after his death soon after arrival at the hospital. It is the third assault incident at PMCH in two months.
A senior PMCH doctor admitted that nurses were now handling patients following the strike.
PMCH Acting Principal V.K. Gupta said senior doctors have been put on duty in the Emergency Ward.
Health Minister Mangal Pandey has invited the striking doctors for talks on Friday afternoon.