A lawsuit was filed at the State Council against the legality of the Doctors Syndicate assembly’s decisions that were ratified on 12 February.
The decisions included providing free of charge healthcare, referring the Minister of Health to a disciplinary committee in his capacity as a syndicate member, and demanding the trial of the police officers accused of assaulting two doctors at Al-Matariya hospital late January, among other decisions.
These decisions caused conflict between the ministry and the syndicate. Half of public hospitals faced administrative and governmental threats as they attempted to enforce these decisions, in particular providing healthcare free of charge.
Syndicate lawyer Mohamed Shawky told Daily News Egypt the court adjourned the case until 27 March pending the syndicate’s review of the filed lawsuit. However he said there are informal claims that the lawsuit was filed by Minister of Health Ahmed Emad El-Din in a personal capacity, rather than as a minister.
Meanwhile, the syndicate informed the Ministry of Interior of their upcoming protests on 12 and 19 March at major public healthcare facilities to demand that their assembly decisions be enforced.
In an official statement, the syndicate said the protest demands include preserving the dignity of doctors and protecting them legally from potential assaults by providing adequate security at hospitals.
The police officers accused of assaulting two of Al-Matariya doctors were released 24 hours following their arrest, pending investigations. “The release of the police officers is suspicious and we are still hoping to refer them to trial,” Syndicate chief Ihab Al-Taher told Daily News Egypt.
One of the assaulted doctors, Momen Abdelazeem, previously told Daily News Egypt he cannot continue in his work as no legal actions were taken against the police officers and also the administration is pressuring against implementing the syndicate decision.