Hospital stops asking patients’ for their religion after viral post

Authorities at Little Lourdes Mission Hospital near Pala in Kerala have stopped asking patients to specify their religion after a unique form of protest by a young man named Sunil K Sudheer.

Sunil had reached the hospital earlier this week for a doctor’s appointment for his 58-year-old mother Sarasamma.

“I started filling the registration form,” Sunil said. “Name, age, address.. and then religion?! I was surprised. What does religion have to do with treatment?”

Sunil said his first impulse was to go to the counter and ask them, but decided against it.

Instead, he crossed out each of the options: Hindu, Christian, Muslim and Buddhist, and wrote underneath: “We don’t need any religion-specific medicines.”

Before giving up the form, Sunil took a snap of the registration form and uploaded it on Facebook.

The photo went viral, especially on WhatsApp, and people started calling Sunil using the phone number given in the form.

When contacted, the public relations official at the hospital said it was not the ‘regular’ form.

“We don’t usually ask for the patient’s religion. This was an old form. We’ve made sure that no patients are asked to state their religion prior to consultation,” he told Ultra News.

Many institutions in Kerala ask for religion and caste of the person. This is primarily done for record-keeping purposes. Many of these institutions are designated as minority run institutions.

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