Medicos seek relaxation of rule making it mandatory for them to work in rural areas for a year

Medical services in all the teaching hospitals in the city took a hit with junior doctors boycotting their regular duties, including emergency services. The key demand of medicos is relaxation of the rule that makes it mandatory for them to enter into a bond with the government to work in rural areas for one year.

Instead of a year, medicos maintain that permanent postings will address the issue of shortfall of doctors in villages. Members of Junior Doctors Association said that counselling to post this year’s PG doctors to rural areas that started on Monday at N.T.R. University of Health Sciences, Vijayawada, was also boycotted by their members.

Much to the frustration of patients, services at outpatient and inpatient wings at Osmania General Hospital (OGH) and Gandhi Hospital were affected. “Strikes by junior doctors have become an annual affair and the government is not able to do anything about it. I had to wait for close to three hours in the outpatient ward before they told me to come again on Friday. I am angry because I have to travel from Vanasthalipuram,” says K. Prakash, a kidney patient at OGH.

In addition to opposing mandatory rural service, JUDA members are demanding immediate amendment to a recent Government Order (G.O.Ms.No.93 dt July 01, 2013) which allows private medical colleges to collect the entire stipend amount for the course period from the PG students amounting to about Rs. 8 lakh.

“This is a bizarre order where medicos admitted to PG courses in private medical colleges end up paying their own stipend. In addition to the annual tuition fee of Rs. 2.9 lakh for a three-year PG course, medicos who receive a stipend of Rs. 22,000, have to pay close to Rs. 7.9 lakh during admissions,” APJUDA members said.

They are also demanding that the government make it mandatory for all its employees, including IAS and IPS officers, covered under the medical insurance in private hospitals, to be treated only at government hospitals.

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