NEW DELHI: The government has decided to open the doors for medical colleges to be set up in the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) mode in an effort to address India’s burgeoning need for doctors and hence the need for more medical seats.
The Union Health Ministry has sent a note to the Medical Council of India asking it to amend the criterion for establishment of medical colleges and allow for the private sector to enter into Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with the government to upgrade district hospitals as medical colleges.
Ministry sources told Express that the move is likely to benefit all such district hospitals across the country which need upgradation and can be converted into medical colleges.
“The idea is that each district of the country should have a medical college,” the sources said.
The note, however, mentions that state governments would retain their quota as far as admission to these medical colleges is concerned.
The note sent to the MCI sets out detailed criteria for the government entering into a PPP mode for upgrading district hospitals into medical colleges.
The criteria include that the hospital should have a minimum of 300 beds with infrastructural facilities capable of being developed into a teaching institution and that the medical college set up shall provide free transportation facilities for students and nine staff members.
The hospital while being upgraded has to be transferred by the government to the applicant, which will be a trust or society, through an appropriate MoU at a lease of 33 years to 99 years.
“While transferring the government hospital, the state government might safeguard the interest of the state particularly in respect of admission of students under government quota in the medical college and patient care in the hospital,” the note said.
The hospital must be suitably altered through appropriate modifications into a teaching hospital with the break-up of the 300 beds into 120 beds for surgical specialities and 120 for medical specialities and 60 for Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
The personnel working in the hospitals like technicians, para-clinical staff including nurses and the medial staff would be transferred to the medical college and shall be under the administrative control of the dean of the medical college, thus ensuring that there is no “duality”.