Medical students dodging rural service: Maharashtra government to streamline process | mumbai news | Hindustan Times
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Medical students dodging rural service: Maharashtra government to streamline process

To ensure medical and dental graduates don’t dodge their mandatory service in rural areas, the state is setting up a portal to streamline the scheme

mumbai Updated: Aug 09, 2017 15:39 IST
Musab Qazi

To ensure medical and dental graduates don’t dodge their mandatory service in rural areas, the state is setting up a portal to streamline the scheme.

The portal will have details of vacant positions in rural health care facilities. Graduates will have to apply online for the bond service, after which the vacant positions will be allotted to students.

Medical and dental graduates, post graduates and super specialty students from government-run medical colleges need to spend a year at a state-run rural health care centre after writing the final exam. The rules state students who don’t do so must pay a fine of Rs15 lakh, Rs50 lakh and Rs2.5 crore.

But many students end up never stepping into a rural health care centre, or paying the fine, said officials, adding that this move will help change that.

READ: Medical students, serve in Maharashtra’s remote areas, get 400 marks in PG entrance tests

“Around 2,800 students graduate from government-run medical colleges a year, but not more than 500 doctors join rural services. No one knows where the rest of them go. Few pay the fine,” said Satish Pawar, director, Directorate of Health Services (DHS).

The portal is being developed by Maharashtra Knowledge Corporation Limited (MKCL), a public limited company.

An official from the state’s Directorate of Medical Education and Research (DMER) said poor coordination between government agencies was allowing students to dodge the bond service without paying a fine.

“The DMER hands over a list of graduating students to the DHS, which then assigns them to rural health care facilities. But due to little clarity about vacancies in these facilities, many graduates are able to slip away,” the official said, requesting anonymity.