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Maharashtra: Doctors may get degrees only after rural stint

Maharashtra: Doctors may get degrees only after rural stint
19 Oct 2017
  • The Maharashtra education department is considering extending the duration of MBBS from the current 5.5. years to 6.5 years.
  • The additional year would be dedicated for rural postings of students. Till they complete a one-year stint, they wouldn't get a degree.
  • This comes right after Maharashtra cancelled the registration of 4,500 doctors for not serving in rural areas, a mandatory provision.

  • What do the current rules stipulate?
  • Graduates, post-graduates and super-specialty doctors have to serve in rural areas for a year. If they don't, they have to pay fines of Rs 10L, 50L and 2cr respectively.
  • Twenty years ago, the proposed framework was already in place. But in 1999, the health department said it didn't have enough vacancies to accommodate all graduates.
  • Hence compulsory rural posting before post-graduation was scrapped.

  • What does the violation by 4,500 doctors mean?
  • Skipping rural posting and not paying bonds mean many doctors are operating without even a license.
  • They were not acquiring licenses as to get one, they have to produce a bond-free certificate to the Maharashtra Medical Council.
  • Of the 4,500 suspended, some had graduated as long back as 15 years ago.
  • "Working without a license…amounts to quackery," said DMER head Dr Pravin Shingare.

  • But why are students not following rules?
  • The objective of the rural year is to provide doctors "exposure to complicated cases", an official said.
  • However, according to Dr. Sagar Mundada, Indian Medical Association youth wing chairman, "The real issue is poor infrastructure at primary health centres."
  • "Except for a handful, no drugs are supplied. Essential materials are of low quality and in poor quantity. The quarters are poorly-maintained," he said.

  • What steps is the government taking?
  • After the DMER report flagged 4,500 doctors for skipping rural postings, the Maharashtra government has created a program to deal with such students.
  • Once one enrols in any of the state's 19 medical colleges, they will be given ID numbers linked to their Aadhaar.
  • The software will then track their career graph and check if they have completed the rural posting.

  • What changes might come about in the course?
  • If the proposal to extend the course duration is approved by the government, it will impact about 2,800 students every year who pass out from the 19 public medical colleges.
  • Overall, Maharashtra produces 7,000 MBBS graduates annually.
  • "If this proposal gets the nod, students will have to go for rural postings before appearing for their PG entrances."

  • What does the medical community want?
  • The medical community thinks this proposal is unfair. A senior professor at JJ Hospital said it would give an advantage to students in private colleges who will save a year and thus can appear for PG before their government college counterparts.
  • Instead, "why can't the government break up the one-year internship tenure and incorporate rural posting without increasing the overall course duration?" suggested Mundada.

  • This post first appeared on NewsBytes: Latest News, Breaking News India, Today News, Current News, please read the originial post: here

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    Maharashtra: Doctors may get degrees only after rural stint


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