Students say they are willing to work in rural posts, but not on a temporary basis; demand permanent post

The Medical Council of India’s (MCI) move to amend the postgraduate medical education regulations that makes one year of rural posting compulsory for those seeking admission to PG courses has sent medical students in the State into a huddle.

The students, who have already protested against the rural posting, will soon decide on the next course of action.

“It is not compulsory rural posting but compulsory temporary posting, so that the government need not appoint permanent doctors for the existing vacancies. This will take away the powers of State government for appointing government doctors,” said a medical student of Madras Medical College.

“We are willing to work in villages but not on a temporary basis. We demand a permanent post. In Tamil Nadu, 90 to 95 per cent of vacancies have been filled at the primary health centres level. Doctors here are willing to work in rural areas and the recently held medical recruitment board exam is proof. For around 900 vacancies, nearly 6,000 doctors had appeared. This shows there is competition among doctors to work in rural areas,” said J. Praveen, secretary of Tamil Nadu Medical Colleges Interns Association.

G.R. Ravindranath, general secretary, Doctors Association for Social Equality, said MCI had amended the regulations last month. “We are organising the second seminar against rural posting at Tiruchi on Wednesday. The first one was held at Chennai last month. We are inviting students and will discuss the next phase of action,” he said.

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