The state’s medical education department is keen on scrapping the mandatory rural stint for MBBS and post-graduate medical students, medical education minister Vijay Gavit told the legislative assembly on Thursday.
“We are of the opinion that if we are not providing jobs to the students in our hospitals and colleges, then we should not ask them for the service bond money. I will discuss this with the public health department. We plan to scrap the bond system,” said Gavit.
Currently, students seeking admission for MBBS course have to sign a bond of Rs5 lakh and Rs 50 lakh for a post-graduate course. If the student wishes to opt out of the mandatory rural stint, he has to pay up the bond amount. Gavit said that the bond taken for graduate and post-graduate students would be scrapped eventually.
The minister’s statement is in complete contrast to the state’s earlier policy, where it had vigorously pursued service bonds for medical students. The state’s primary health care centres and hospitals in mofussil areas face acute shortage of doctors and medicines. The service bonds were introduced to make up for this shortage and ensure that the graduates gave back something to the system.
The Medical Council of India, however, is mulling increasing the one-year rural stint to two years for all medical students. Majority of the doctors have said that the system helped the rich students get away from the stint and added to the state coffers.