MUHS proposal draws flak from Pune doctors

Medical practitioners oppose health university resolution, say 16-year-olds too young to deal with stress of medical course

Pune-based medical practitioners are not in favour of the resolution put forward by the Senate of the Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS) urging the Medical Council of India (MCI) to examine the possibility of introduction of health sciences courses after Std X.

Nothing wrong with the idea: Dr Arun Jamkar, vice-chancellor of MUHS,
feels offering medical courses after Std X will attract more students of
high calibre. File pic

Recently, the senate of MUHS, a body of 76-members comprising representatives of different stakeholders in health sciences education, had passed a resolution that the medical course should be introduced after Std X.
Taking into account the mindset of a Std X student, president of Indian Medical Association, Pune Chapter, Dr AM Shahade, said, "I don't know the details of the proposal, however 16 is too early an age to deal with the stress and the maturity needed for the medical course, which will also result in high dropout rates."

Old debate
The state medical fraternity for a long time has been discussing about introducing the medical science courses immediately after Std X, only to reduce the number of academic years for a student. Dr Arun Jamkar, Vice Chancellor of MUHS, said, "The academic period of medical science is too lengthy and that is the reason intellectual students refrain from opting for medical science and go for engineering. As far as the maturity is concerned, I would say today's generation is more mature than the earlier one. Therefore, they can deal with the curriculum very easily."

Countering the suggestion given by MUHS, Joint Secretary of National Integrated Medical Association Mandar Ranade said, "For the sake of skipping two years of lengthy curriculum, who would want to take a risk of being treated by untrained or half-trained doctors? If we observe the trend among students, their choices of selecting educational courses keep changing therefore only to save their academic years we can't play with the lives of the people." Ranade further suggested emulating foreign countries where students are eligible for stipend from the government while continuing their education.

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