MBBS course duration to be extended further, one year rural stint compulsory

Published On: 06 Feb 2012

 | Last Updated On: 06 Feb 2012

Government of India is planning to extend the duration of its undergraduate MBBS course to 6.5 years from 5.5 years presently.

The health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad and the Medical Council of India (MCI) discussed in a meeting on Saturday the revisions to be made in the MCI Act to add one year compulsory rural posting for all MBBS students before getting an MBBS degree. This was earlier proposed by former health minister A Ramadoss in 2007.

The proposal has still not been approved but discussions are going on and in another 2 weeks time Council will prepare a module on how to make MBBS doctors visit and work in rural areas. The decision will then be taken by the ministry. The sources from MCI revealed that if the proposal gets approval then 40000 Indian students will be employed for a year in the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM). The one year rural posting is expected to help students come across unique cases and diseases, which will enhance their learning. The students will be paid as doctors and not as interns during that extra year of rural posting.

The lack of human resources in health sector in India is causing great impact to the flagship program NRHM, and the susceptible populations in rural, tribal and hilly areas fail to access the adequate health services. A study revealed that the number of doctors in urban areas is 4 times that of rural areas and that of nurses is about 3 times higher. Till March 2010, health centers had to suffer vacancies even in available posts due to excessive delays in recruitments. Posts were lying vacant for more than 34% of specialists, 20% of pharmacists, 17% of ANMs and 10% of doctors.

Planning Commission study discloses that India is facing shortage of 6 lakh doctors, 10 lakh nurses and 2 lakh dental surgeons, leading to a poor doctor-patient ratio. As per a ministry report, while only 6.3% of the doctors’ posts were vacant on paper, 67% of the doctors were reported to be absent from their duties.  

As per the ministry, posting in rural areas would provide MBBS students a better opportunity of securing a post graduate (PG) medical seat. As an incentive, the MBBS doctors who have served in rural areas would get extra 10-30 marks in PG exams. The health minister has also declared that the MBBS students who will serve in rural areas for 1 year would get 10 extra marks while those serving for 3 years in remote areas of India would get 30 additional marks. He also added that 50% seats in PG diploma courses would be reserved for government medical officers who have served for at least 3 years in country’s most backward areas.

Source: Times of India

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PG ASPIRANT : THE GOVERNMENT WANTS TO INCREASE THE NUMBER OF UG SEATS
THE GOVERNMENT WANTS TO INCREASE THE DURATION OF THE COURSE
WE REALLY NEED TO LET THE PEOPLE KNOW WHAT THE GOVERNMENT REALLY WANTS TO DO

First try giving jobs to the doctors' posts in your department that are vacant. Try increasing the seats for post graduation to bridge the UG:PG gap. Try understanding the fact that increasing the UG seats is not the answer to the health woes of our state. Try stopping to fill your pockets with the money sanctioned for the people.
For every PG seat in the state there are more than 500 contenders and that should be a shame to you. A post graduation should be a transition and not a rat race. A seat should be based on merit on not deep pockets. Try to introspect on what the real need of the hour is and it is definitely not an increase in the MBBS seats. They will pass out and get into the race for PG and you won't have one doctor coming out to actually work.
At the all India level you have 70000 doctors for a mere 4000 seats and at our state a mere 500 seats for the 9000 doctors writing thus having a backlog of about 90% every year with new students being added every single year. Who ever is planning these increments is doing just so that the demand remains high and so does the price for PG seats (2005 - 90lac for radio; 2012 1.7 cr for radio). A pity!
So bad is the race that doctors don't have the time to come out and protest for the lack of even a single day to put into this away from the PG preparation. It might look all rosy and colorful to have a "Dr" tag but when it comes down to sitting for 14 -16 hrs a day to prepare with no guarantee what so ever of actually getting what you want, the real picture begins to show.
How do you do it? Its simple really. Just increase the Doctor:PG ratio which currently stands at 2. Honestly there isn't much thats going to differ in terms of the quality if you increase it to 1:3 or 1:4 (Doctor:PG). Yet its not been done why? Because that would increase the seats by 4 times the present number and that would mean a drop of prices all around. How would our dear politico's let that happen considering that they own most of the medical colleges in India.
Another viable option is to simply raise the existing number of seats offered for a medical college. It is just so simple. A college can hold 200-250 students yes but when it comes to the number of PG seats granted to the same college then it a SHOCKER(Please do the research).
Another simple option is to just scrap the 2 year Diploma seats and convert them to Masters cos honestly this is another blinder by our government to keep us in the dark. There is practically no difference in the way they are coached other than the one year lesser duration and the difference in salaries that they receive once they are done. Then why have such a course in the first place? Cos in the government service it costs 40000 to maintain a diploma and 70000 for a masters candidate.
WAKE UP PEOPLE! FOR WE'RE APPROACHING A DAY WHEN THERE WILL BE MONEYBAGS TREATING YOU AND THEN YOU WON'T LIVE TO TELL THE TALE!

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