LUCKNOW: Chhatrapati Shahuji Maharaj Medical University will soon have a regional training centre for medical teachers, which would be on the lines of academic staff colleges run by the University Grants Commission. An announcement to this effect was made by chairman, board of governors, Medical Council of India, Prof KK Talwar on Thursday.
“MCI is in the process of implementing some steps to ensure that India does not lag behind in the field of medicine in the 21st century and we are able to meet the health care requirement of our vast population. Setting up regional centres for training of faculty across India is one of the many steps planned. One such centre has been allocated to your college,” he said.
Addressing the CSMMU’s convocation day function, Dr Talwar drew the attention of teachers and students on several important issues, including the need to maintain quality in teaching, training and research. “From 150 in 1995, the number of medical colleges has increased to 335 today. Most of these colleges are in the private sector. The fast expansion has unfortunately led to dilution in quality of teaching and training. This adversely affects quality of patient care and medical research as well. So, we need good teachers to address all the three aspects,” he said.
Another serious issue is the rise of capitation fee being charged by private medical colleges. He stated that some of the meritorious students who can get admission in private colleges are not able to join because of the high fees and thus unmeritorious students enter these colleges. “The situation is critical and requires to be addressed urgently. One way is to rationalise the fee structure for medical education, while encouraging meritorious students through scholarships and interest-free education loans. Governments may also consider a public private partnership model for medical education,” he said.
Dr Talwar said that there is a need to address the issue of ‘declining inclination and interest of young generation towards medical education’. “Bright students now prefer engineering, management and commerce, while very few opt for medicine. And the country cannot afford this,” he said adding that the dearth of opportunities is to be blamed. “The number of post-graduate seats has not increased in parallel with increase in UG seats (22,000 vs 40,000). As a result, many medical graduates spend up to three years preparing for the PG entrance examination. In fact the internship period, meant for gaining experience in different branches, is invariably used by students to prepare for their PG test,” he said.
Looking at the problem of fewer people being interested in taking government jobs and rural postings, he suggested creation of incentives such as adequate financial emoluments for medical profession. “The pay structure should be attractive for those who join as faculty members in medical colleges/institutes or various health services with even special incentives for those joining rural services,” said Dr Talwar who has been the head of PGI Chandigarh for seven years.