The four-day-strong strike by young doctors in Sindh claimed the lives of two minors here on Saturday. According to the information available with media sources, two children died due to the non-availability of doctors at the National Institute of Child Health (NICH) in Karachi. Patients continue to suffer incessantly in public hospitals as the doctor’s strike against the provincial government enters its fourth day on Saturday. The young doctors are protesting for increases in their salaries, health insurance and other perks at par with those offered to doctors working in public hospitals in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab. The Young Doctors Association also alleges that despite agreeing to address the grievances during a previous similar strike, the provincial government has not yet issued any official notification. The boycott has been said to continue unless all previous demands are met. Meanwhile, Outpatient Departments (OPDs) and wards in Jinnah Postgraduate Medical College (JPMC), Dr Ruth Pfau Civil Hospital, Lyari General Hospital, National Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases and other government-run hospitals remain shut. Hospitals in Thatta, Jaccobabad and other districts are also denying patients treatment because of suspended OPDs. Meanwhile, parents of children dead amid strikes staged a protest and blocked the road outside NICH; holding the closed OPD responsible for these deaths. NICH chief Dr Jamal Raza has categorically denied these allegations and noted, “Both the children were under treatment in the ward. One was mentally challenged and the other was suffering from pneumonia. Only the outpatient department (OPD) is shut and wards are open” The strike has led to government hospitals turning away thousands of patients who then have to seek expensive treatment at private hospitals. Patients being affected by the crisis have staged sit-ins outside several hospitals against the shutdown. Published in Daily Times, February 17th 2019.