Millennium Post

CM points finger at Centre's policy over dearth of doctors in Bengal

Kolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday blamed the Centre's faulty policy for the dearth of doctors in the state.

"We are creating mother and child hub, medical colleges and other medical facilities, but we are not getting enough doctors. This is because medical entrance has become an all-India exam and students from outside the state are going back to their home state. We need more students from the state or else it may emerge as a big problem," Banerjee, who is also the Health minister, said in response to a query about the state of doctors in the state Assembly on Friday.

Banerjee said that the department had advertised for hiring 820 doctors, to which only 105 responded. "101 doctors turned up for counseling, out of which 41 agreed to join and 39 joined ultimately. The doctors are refusing to go to the rural areas, which is also posing a problem," she added.

Minister of State for Health Chandrima Bhattacharjee said that the West Bengal Health Recruitment Board, that started functioning since April 2003, had recruited 33,855 health officials including doctors, nurses and paramedical staff. "The number of doctors recruited since 2011 is 6,100, while that for nurses is 15,454," she added. Senior Health department officials believe that the Centre must

take some initiatives to simplify the norms of the Medical Council of India (MCI), the Centre-owned regulating body looking after various issues including the medical admissions.

"New medical colleges have to take permission from the MCI for admitting students to undergraduate medical courses every year. MCI monitors if the medical colleges are fulfilling various parameters and if the minimum requisite infrastructure is available in the hospitals," a Health department official said. Some senior officials believe that the MCI must keep in view the issues relating to the crisis of doctors in the hospitals, before recommending to the Centre about the cancellation of licence of a new medical college.

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