The new Minimum Qualification for Teachers in Medical Institutions (Amendment) Regulations 2019, a gazette notification which was issued in August last year, may help a few government medical colleges in the state that have 15% faculty shortage (especially Bidar, Kodagu and Karwar), in getting teachers.
The teacher eligibility qualification has been amended to ensure even those with PG diploma can pursue senior residency.Those who do not pursue senior residecy cannot teach in medical colleges. At present, only MBBS doctors who have MS, MD or DNB qualifications can pursue senior residency in medical colleges. Also, the maximum age to join it has been extended from 40 to 45.
Karnataka has 17 government colleges and 38 private medical colleges, and two centrally-owned ESI medical colleges, a total of 57 that is the highest in the country. Dr P G Girish, Director of medical education department, told DH that district colleges that were opened four years back were the only ones that aren't running on full faculty strength.
"Only recently opened medical colleges, the four-year-old ones, have 10% to 15% faculty deficiency. Otherwise we have sufficient faculty in all other medical colleges that can accommodate 150 medical students and a few PG seats. We have little difficulty in Karwar and Kodagu that we will be taking care of this year," he said.
"We have deficiencies in the area of junior residents and senior residents. We lack doctors only in Bidar, Kodagu and Karwar. Upto 10% faculty shortage is acceptable by the MCI. We have upto 15% for which we are having time to time recruitment for. Also, last year all PG Diploma seats were converted to Masters except 83 seats," he added.
S Sachidananda, Vice Chancellor, Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, said, "There are quite a few diploma holders who are doing their senior residency right now. But they won't get a promotion unless they have an MD. They will be stuck lifelong as senior residents as they cannot be considered for promotion to assistant professors, associate professors, and professors. Upto 5% faculty shortage is allowed."
C R Jayanthi, Dean, Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute, said, "With this notification, we can take PG Diploma holders as senior residents upto 45 years of age but there is no clarity if we can consider them for promotion to assistant professors. As of today you need an MD or MS to become an assistant professor."
"But if you only want to practise, you can do that with a PG Diploma," she added.