Severity: Warning Alert

Security: Young Doctors Association launches strike in Quetta, Pakistan, April 6. Disruptive protest held; additional rallies, clashes likely.

This alert affects Quetta

This alert began 06 Apr 2020 15:33 GMT and is scheduled to expire 09 Apr 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: Doctor strike
  • Location(s): Quetta (map)
  • Date: April 6
  • Impact: Medical service disruptions; likely protests; possible clashes

Summary
The Young Doctors Association (YDA) launched a strike in Quetta April 6. YDA leaders launched the strike to demand equipment to protect medical staff against coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Organizers say the strike will continue until their demands are met. The work stoppage is likely to prompt delays to medical services in Quetta.

YDA members held a protest march from Civil Hospital to the nearby Civil Secretariat April 6. Police intercepted the march and arrested dozens of YDA members. Clashes occurred during the confrontation. Similar protests are possible at hospitals, government offices, and other rally points throughout Quetta for the duration of the strike. Security forces are likely to deploy additional personnel to protest areas. Further clashes between protesters and the police could occur if demonstrations are overly disruptive. Localized road travel disruptions are also likely near protest venues.

Advice
Confirm all medical appointments, including the availability of services at private clinics, due to the potential for increased demand. If possible, contact healthcare facilities in advance for information about wait times, which could vary among hospitals and clinics. Ensure travel medical insurance includes coverage for medical evacuation. Avoid all protests and allow additional time for ground transportation near rally sites.