New Delhi: Medical education in India is suffering from the lack of standard among medical postgraduates, especially in the field of radiology, said Dr Harsh Mahajan, chief radiologist, Mahajan Imaging.
“Radiology is the first choice of medical graduates for doing postgraduation. You have the best talent in radiology and most of them opt for government medical colleges where there is a wide variation in the level of technology and the level of teachers. In private institutions, the infrastructure and technology might be great but they may not have an inflow of patients and also may not attract the best students,” Dr Mahajan said here on Tuesday while speaking at the launch of a mission to train 100,000 current and future Indian healthcare professionals.
He added, “About 60-65 per cent of postgraduates qualifying in radiology are lacking hands on experience with the latest technology. The challenge is how to bring the level of those who are practicing radiology and want to improve their skills to a set standard. The difficult part is how to create an environment for them to learn. It’s not about the theoretical part because that you can learn on the internet, but the real challenge is providing them the hands-on-training.”
Launching the ‘Yogya Bharat or Skilled India’ mission, GE Healthcare on Tuesday said the company has partnered with leading healthcare and education experts to set up healthcare education and training institutes that will provide accredited skill building programmes for 12th Standard pass eligible students and skill enhancement programmes for existing healthcare professionals.
GE Healthcare aims to set up at least one healthcare education and training institute in each state. The first few healthcare education and training institutes with state-of-the-art healthcare infrastructure will commence operations in Mumbai, Greater Noida, Bathinda and Bhubaneshwar.
The first institute, which commenced operations in Mumbai, is funded and run by GE Healthcare with the first batch of students taking up Radiology Technologist certified programme. According GE Healthcare, the company is in the process of partnering with more public and private institutions to scale up this model across India.
Through healthcare education and training institutes across the country, GE Healthcare along with its partners aim to train and contribute 100,000 skilled healthcare workforce to strengthen India’s healthcare system over the next five years.
This workforce will include newly trained, certified employable professionals for allied healthcare services as well as skill enhanced healthcare professionals who are in the system already.
A study done by PHFI (Public Health Foundation of India) indicates that the current requirement for Allied Healthcare Professionals (AHP) in India is nearly 65 lakh as against a supply of less than three lakh.
GE Healthcare has developed the curriculum for several courses including imaging, patient safety, advanced medical diagnostics and leadership development. National Skill Development Corporation India, through the Healthcare Sector Skills Council, is playing a key role in defining curriculum for these courses and supporting accreditation.
“Not only will this initiative bridge the deep skills gap that exists in the healthcare sector but also enhance employability in the country,” said Dilip Chenoy, Managing Director and CEO, National Skills Development Corporation.
John L Flannery, President and CEO, GE Healthcare, said, “The initiative is among the largest skill enhancement programmes for GE Healthcare in the world. This is a great example of how we can use our scale and experience to partner with India.”
Talking about the mission, Terri Bresenham, President and CEO, GE Healthcare India, said, “This is a landmark initiative in our 25-year history in India. We believe a skilled India is absolutely necessary for a healthier India.”
GE Healthcare said it has signed MOUs with Max Institute of Health Education and Research (MIHER) to set up institutes in Greater Noida, Mohali and Bathinda; Manipal Health Foundation in Karnataka; Mahajan Imaging in Delhi; ILFS Skills Development Corporation in Trivandrum, Coimbatore and Bhubaneshwar; Symbiosis International University in Pune; and has entered into strategic partnership with HCL for education in multiple specialities.