BENGALURU: Only doctors with postgraduate qualifications should be doing surgical procedures, said Dr Devi Shetty, renowned cardiac surgeon and founder of Narayana Health at a panel discussion here on Saturday.
Titled ‘Innovation in healthcare and how it can facilitate access and equity,’ the discussion was led by Dr. Shetty who said, “MBBS doctors legally cannot even interpret a chest X-ray in developed countries.”
In a country where 70 per cent of the population’s healthcare needs are met by the private sector, he suggested bridging the human resource gap by encouraging 65,900 MBBS doctors to become intermediary specialists.
“They should be given diplomas in gynaecology, paediatrics, anaesthesia and radiology. About 80 per cent vacancy of specialists across India can be stemmed in this manner. We produce 26 million babies a year and 20 per cent of mothers need C-section. MBBS doctors shouldn’t be doing C-sections. By this numbers, we need 2.25 lakh gynaecologists and so many more aneasthetists and radiologists,” he said.
This is one of the ways of bringing down maternal mortality rate (MMR) and disassociate healthcare from affluence, he said. He gave the example of Maharashtra which had brought down the MMR and was the next best state in India after Kerala with the least MMR. “They gave intermediary qualifications to their doctors and without spending an extra penny brought down mortality rates,” he said.
Organised by Global Health Strategies, an American public health institute, other panelists were Dr Kristian Olson, Medical Director, CAMTech (Consortium of Affordable Medical Technologies) and Adarsh Natarajan, AIndra Systems Pvt Ltd.