New Delhi: India will have 2,500 new hospitals thereby creating 2.5 million additional jobs in the next 5 years, Dr V K Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog, said on Friday. By 2024, the country is also likely to attain the WHO norm of having one doctor for every thousand patients, he said.
Speaking at the launch of a certificate course on ‘Specialist Training to Tackle the Burden of NCDs’ organised by FICCI, Dr Paul said that the government has made provisions to double the number of UG seats in medical education by 2024, but attaining the required number of specialist doctors is a five times more difficult agenda.
He further added that 80,000 PG seats would be added by 2024, with the participation of private sector healthcare providers.
Dr Paul also highlighted that with the improvement in the ease of doing business in the private healthcare sector, new players will enter the sector which will not only create new employment opportunities but also provide better healthcare services.
FICCI has partnered with ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) to launch a Diabetes Certification Course for General Practitioners (GPs), considering the WHO statistics of 69.2 million Indians suffering with diabetes in 2015 and not enough endocrinologists to deliver specialised care.
Commenting on the tie-up, Dr V K Paul said, “The ECHO model is unique in more than one ways, but what makes this programme even more unique is the partnership with the industry through FICCI.”
FICCI, jointly with NITI Aayog, has been working on identifying innovative alternate methods of strengthening the number of specialised doctors in India that can be scaled-up, especially for high burden diseases and conditions.
Manoj Jhalani, AS & MD (NHM), Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India, highlighted the quadruple challenge of quantity, quality, right skill-mix and physical distribution of human resources for healthcare.
Jhalani said, “It is important to empower primary health teams and General Physicians (GPs). The ministry is working on several aspects to increase the number of specialist doctors in the country and is also exploring participatory approaches for engaging the private sector like contribution for stipends paid to DNB students at both public and private hospitals.”
Appreciating the government’s focus on health, Brig Dr Arvind Lal, Chairman, FICCI Health Services Committee & CMD, Dr Lal Path Labs, said, “We all quote the British, US, Cuban, Thai and Indonesian models of healthcare, but with Ayushman Bharat, an Indian model will emerge.”
Dr Lal further said that empowering GPs on diabetes management could vastly improve patient outcomes as about 95% of the diabetics in India are being attended to by primary care doctors, GPs and family physicians.
Sharing ECHO’s vision of touching 1 billion lives by 2025, Dr Sanjeev Arora, Founder & Director, Project ECHO, said, “Out of the 1 billion, we want to reach 400 million beneficiaries in India, through training doctors using the ECHO model of integrated guided practice. India needs to exponentially increase its capacity building programmes and this is not possible without leveraging technology.”
Dr Arora said that through these partnerships about 1,000 training hubs can be set up in India. This can be a game changer and once proven successful, can be replicated to other disease conditions or specialties or to other sectors like primary education, he added.
The FICCI-ECHO Diabetes Certification Course for GPs is a 20-week, tele-mentoring programme that will be initially taken up as a pilot project to train 100 GPs on logical management of diabetic patients.