The Antagoniser
Opinion: India needs to treble its Healthcare Budget

Opinion: India needs to treble its Healthcare Budget

A recent piece published on India Medical Times reported that medical students want the government to increase postgraduation places. It is indeed sad that students have to point out to us what is obvious and something really associations like Indian Medical Association ought to be pushing for. more

Opinion: Exit test if done right can do wonder for raising the standard of medical education in India

Opinion: Exit test if done right can do wonder for raising the standard of medical education in India

I have long argued for a common robust exit test to raise the standards of undergraduate medical education in the country and hence the draft bill suggesting government’s desire to move ahead in this direction is welcome news. The move will have several positive offshoots. more

Opinion: For how long, health journalists will continue to practise armchair journalism?

Opinion: For how long, health journalists will continue to practise armchair journalism?

We often talk about unethical practices in the medical world but it would be impossible to cleanse the inept and corrupt system without examining its enablers. In this sense, a digital, cash-sparse economy would help and despite widespread criticism of the government move, I think it is necessary pain that we must go through and we should probably go even further. But we have already written about the effect of demonetisation on our healthcare before. Today, I would like to discuss some of the other enablers — for example, the role of the media. more

Why allowing ‘for profit’ institutions to run medical colleges is need of the hour

Why allowing ‘for profit’ institutions to run medical colleges is need of the hour

The decision of Medical Council of India (MCI) to allow “for profit” institutions to run medical colleges is timely and one that I personally feel should be commended. For a long time in India, we have left education to ill-funded state-run or charitable institutions. more

How will the Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 note ban impact doctors, healthcare and medical education in India?

How will the Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 note ban impact doctors, healthcare and medical education in India?

Even the most casual visitor of this column (The Antagoniser) would have noticed that we don’t shy away from stating things as we see them. We criticise governments often, and regularly, for their lack of action and bureaucrats for their lack of planning and efficiency. We admonish the average doctor to not give into the apathy as that will change nothing and we hold the so-called leadership of the medical profession accountable for the current state of the healthcare in India. more

Opinion: Govt must be pro-active in utilising the free beds in private hospitals

Opinion: Govt must be pro-active in utilising the free beds in private hospitals

The news of private and even charitable hospitals turning away poor patients, some even in a dire state of emergency, is not new. It is a fact that private hospitals make a number of promises when it comes to obtaining land from governments at throw-away prices. They also get a number of other benefits that other businessmen in the society do not get. In lieu, the state demands that a proportion of the care they provide to the society is free. The deal is simple and should be easily deliverable. more

Healthcare will never be resurrected by attacking doctors

Healthcare will never be resurrected by attacking doctors

The state of law and order in the country is such that anybody can get into any public hospital and beat the doctors up. All it sometimes takes is for one female patient to complain of molestation, and without any prima facie evidence, the doctor will be locked up with considerable loss of reputation and inevitably income and livelihood. more

Opinion: Are we just going to replace MCI by an even more bureaucratic and government-controlled institution?

Opinion: Are we just going to replace MCI by an even more bureaucratic and government-controlled institution?

I don’t know how many in the medical profession are aware that the Government of India is proposing a radical overhaul of the monitoring and development of healthcare in the country and a “Draft National Medical Commission Bill 2016” is out there for consultation. It is important all stakeholders and especially those in the medical profession engage with the consultation exercise so that a meaningful progress can be made. Just as a way of continuing the debate, please see my thoughts here. more

Need for structured training programmes for GPs and employing them fruitfully

Need for structured training programmes for GPs and employing them fruitfully

The plight of a fresh pass out MBBS graduate is worth spending some time over if we wish to continue to attract the best and the brightest in the society to a career in medicine. I am not oblivious to the fate of other graduates in the country but as a doctor, I feel I should focus on the doctors and the patients. more

Opinion: How resident doctors can win the trust of patients

Opinion: How resident doctors can win the trust of patients

Mr Jain (Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain) seems to be a good minister and in the excerpts of his speech that I have read on India Medical Times, I find evidence of careful thinking and attention to detail. Of course, he will not get everything right but I commend his efforts. He is also right in saying that senior doctors should respect junior doctors. And why only junior doctors, we should all respect each other. The character and the upbringing of a person are most reflected in how they treat the ones who depend on them. It is true of not just medicine but every single walk of life. more