Just like how, Compulsory Rural Service and Service Quota in Post Graduate Education for Government Doctors led to the upliftment of health care in Tamil Nadu, let us hope that 3 Years Compulsory Rural Service for MBBS Graduates in West Bengal will lead to improvement in West Bengal as well
Dealing sternly with young doctors’ reluctance to work in rural areas, West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, who is also the state health minister, made it mandatory for fresh MBBS graduates to serve the first three years of their career in the interior areas of the state.
“We have to send the doctors to the rural areas of the state immediately. It will be compulsory for the MBBS graduates to treat the poor patients at the primary health centres in the villages for the first three years of their career. My government will provide them jobs,” she said at a programme after a meeting at Swasthya Bhavan in Salt Lake on Friday.
To woo the young doctors, Ms Banerjee informed that her government would bring them back after their three years’ stint. “The government will offer them facilities right from incentives to additional marks when they will pursue MD/MS for higher education,” she explained. She offered incentives to the existing government doctors, nurses and ward boys.
Giving a fillip to the sagging health services in West Bengal, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today said that it will be mandatory for fresh medical graduates to serve for three years in rural areas while the performance of government doctors, nurses and medical staff would be evaluated for awards.”It will be made compulsory for MBBS passouts to serve in villages for the first three years to build up their careers. My government will give you jobs,” Banerjee said after a meeting with health officials at the Swasthya Bhavan.
The state government would bring back the young doctors after three years who would thereafter be given opportunity to do their MS and higher studies, she said.
Stating that there would be awards for good performance in state hospitals, clinics and primary health centres, she said that she had asked Health Secretary Sanjay Mitra to evaluate the performance of doctors, nurses and medical staff.
Banerjee asked government doctors who drew 30 per cent non-practicing allowance, to be more punctual and dutiful and serve patients over and above their duty hours.
She also urged doctors holding responsible positions in large hospitals to visit sub-divisional and local hospitals so that patients felt they were ‘in the company of gods’ and which would help their cure.
She reiterated that government hospitals should not refuse patients and said that the state government had recruited 2,500 nurses and would appoint more doctors to meet the situation.
Banerjee said that the Planning Commission had approved a Rs 8,000-crore scheme under which 26 hospitals would be set up in 11 backward districts.
“We have plans to open diagnostic centres in each primary health centre and if necessary, we will go for it on a PPP model,” she said.
She said if required doctors from other states would be called in to meet the growing need in the state.
Criticising the previous Left Front government for raising a hue and cry over baby deaths and deficiencies in the health sector, the chief minister said “the Left Front and CPI(M) should be ashamed of their non-performance in last 34 years that led to collapse of the health infrastructure.
“You can’t expect a magic turn in the situation in the health sector in eight months,” she said.
She also charged a section of the media for ‘systematically’ projecting deficiencies in the health department and hospitals to malign her government.
“I ask them not to play with fire and project what is positive.”
Calling for creating mass awareness against superstitious beliefs that led to wrong handling of pregnant women during delivery at home leading to medical complications, Banerjee said that in the last eight months, child mortality in the state had considerably dropped and it now ranked ninth on that account in the country.
“It is a fact that 30 per cent of children are born at home still and it is the endeavour of my government to bring them to hospitals for delivery of healthy babies,” she said.
The chief minister also slammed the opposition for crying hoarse about suicide by farmers and claimed that her government was instrumental in launching the Kisan Credit Card and crop insurance.