One-year rural service to be made must for doctors

One-year rural service to be made must for doctors

Azad regrets MBBS students reluctance to serve in villages

The Centre is planning to make one-year service in village areas mandatory for MBBS doctors, before they apply for post graduation in medicine.

Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad was replying to a question asked by Trinammol Congress MP Tapas Paul, who sought to know whether government is planning to take some steps to solve the problem of lack of qualified doctors and other medical facilities in backward areas of the country.

Apprising the Lok Sabha about the steps taken in the past in this regard, Azad said the government had offered incentives for MBBS doctors undergoing rural service in post-graduate examinations.

The minister said those MBBS students who do one-year of rural service would get 10 marks as additional weightage, while those who did two and three years in the country’s most backward areas would get 20 and 30 marks.

The minister, however, regretted that such incentives have not yielded any results.
“But, I say it with regret that our doctors have decided not to go to the rural areas. Nobody has come forward to avail of the incentives offered by the government,” he said.

While replying to another question, Azad said medical degrees awarded by colleges in the US, Canada, Britain, Australia and New Zealand were recognised by the government.

He said as per a Supreme Court directive, students studying in other countries will have to undergo tests conducted by the National Board of Examinations (NBE) before being allowed to practice in the country. Azad said earlier doctors educated in these countries were allowed to write NBE exam only twice, but now they can take multiple attempts and clear the test.

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