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Times of India
28 July 2011
By, Pratibha Masand
Mumbai, India

Boost For HealthcareBoost For Healthcare
The postgraduate doctors will now have to do their year-long bonded service in the civic healthcare centres instead of a rural stint. This move, said BMC officials, will give a boost to the healthcare system in the suburbs.

“Earlier, the list of postgraduate and super-specialty doctors was given to the central government, who took the decisions on their postings in rural areas,” said Manisha Mhaiskar, additional municipal commissioner (health). “Now, we have decided to post these doctors in our own peripheral and specialty hospitals,” she said.

While 252 doctors will be posted at 16 peripheral hospitals, 30 will be posted in specialty hospitals, 32 in maternity homes and 16 in the major hospitals in the city. “In the peripheral hospitals, most of the doctors are either housemen or registrars. From August 1, our postgraduate doctors will be serving in the hospitals, which is likely to give the system a boost as the patients will be in skilled hands,” Mhaiskar said.

“After this year’s posting, a new batch of doctors will be posted in the hospitals every year. This will ensure that the hospitals have enough doctors at all times,” Mhaiskar added.

The postgraduate students are happy with the decision. “We are satisfied that we now have the option of serving in peripheral hospitals, where living conditions are better than rural areas,” said a final-year student from Nair Hospital.

“It is not that we do not want to serve in rural areas. But if we are getting an option to serve here instead, who wouldn’t want that?” asks a postgraduate student from Bhabha Hospital in Bandra.

“The only other option to get away from serving in rural areas is to pay a bond of Rs 10 lakh, which is quite impossible for a common postgraduate doctor,” he added.

However, Directorate of Medical Research and Education officials said that they have enough doctors who can be send to rural areas for the bonded service.

“Out of 2,000 doctors, about 330 will now be posted by the BMC. But, we still have about 1,600 doctors to do the bonded service in the rural areas,” said Dr Praveen Shingare, director of the DMER.

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