New PG policy likely to create dearth of specialists
The new policy introduced by the health department regarding admission of serving government doctors to postgraduate courses will create further shortage of specialist doctors in the state.chandigarh Updated: Jan 30, 2013 10:34 IST
The new policy introduced by the health department regarding admission of serving government doctors to postgraduate courses will create further shortage of specialist doctors in the state.
As a result of the new policy, the health department is not likely to produce its own specialists for the next eight to 10 years.
Last year in July, the health department had introduced the new policy for admission in postgraduate courses for serving doctors. According to it, the doctors serving in most difficult rural area for two years would get eligible for admission in postgraduate courses under the in-service quota scheme, but the new policy changed it to four years. Similarly, doctors serving in difficult rural areas will have to serve for six years instead of three.
Following this, a total of 141 doctors, who were recently selected, refused to join service despite the fact that the health department gave them extensions and sent them reminders. Eventually, the government had to cancel their appointments on January 9.
Interestingly, after an interval of a decade, the last batch of doctors recruited under the Punjab Civil Medical Services (PCMS) was in 2009.
As per the old policy, this batch would have been eligible for admission in postgraduate course under in-service quota this year. But now it will be eligible after three years, and then they will spend three years in medical college and many of them will spend two to three years in doing senior residency programme. So it will be after at least eight years that the government will get its own specialist doctors.
According to PCMS Doctors Association, in the last one decade the government has failed to recruit even 100 medical specialists. The reason, the association says, is simple that for specialists, the private job is more lucrative.
"The specialists which the health department has produced on its own under in-service postgraduate admission quota have served the people of Punjab. You will not find many specialists, who were recruited directly by the department," said Dr Gagandeep Shergill, joint secretary, PCMS Association, Punjab.
On January 15, the health department had to cancel the appointments of 111 specialist doctors, who didn't join the posting.
The PCMS association had recently suggested to the health department that if the government felt the doctors would desert the department after doing the post-graduation under in-service quota, the department could increase the security bond to Rs 1 crore. The present bond money is Rs 20 lakh.