Gujarat: Govt deploys 1,242 fresh MBBS graduates for COVID-19 duty
Ahmedabad: Aiming to deal with the rapid surge of Covid-19 cases in the State, the Gujarat Health Department has recently issued an order directing over 1,242 MBBS graduates from various government and GMERS Trust-run medical colleges to report for Covid duties.
As per the order issued by the state health commissioner Jai Prakash Shivahare, the medicos had been asked to report to the respective district collectors or municipal commissioners on Monday for Covid duties. Failure to comply with the order would cost them actions under provisions of Epidemics Act.
The state government will initiate action under the Epidemic Diseases Act against the doctors who fail to join the "compulsory COVID-19 duty immediately", said a notification issued by the state health commissioner Jai Prakash Shivahare.
As per the notification, the number of beds in government hospitals have been considerably increased to cope up with the high influx of COVID-19 patients, PTI has reported.
However, there is an acute shortage of manpower to treat the coronavirus patients against the infrastructure created by the state, said the notification.
"The state government urgently needs the services of doctors as coronavirus cases are increasing at an unprecedented pace," Jai Prakash Shivahare said in the notification.
"Around 1,000 such bonded doctors, who were already given appointments as Class-2 medical officers, are now required to join the duty immediately," the order said.
Jai Prakash Shivahare also instructed all the district collectors and municipal commissioners to take action under the Epidemic Diseases Act against the doctors who do not turn up to join the compulsory COVID-19 duty at their respective places.
Doctors under bond comprise those who have recently completed their MBBS from government-run medical colleges. MBBS pass-outs of the Gujarat Medical Education & Research Society-run colleges also fall under this category. As per rules, they are required to serve a specific period in rural areas under bond with the government. Many such graduates prefer to pay the bond amount, instead of working in rural areas.
As per the latest media report by the Times of India, the order issued has been for 513 graduates of state-run medical colleges, 136 graduates on bond period from the state-run medical colleges and 593 graduates from GMERS medical colleges.
Speaking to the daily about the situation a senior health department official said, "The state, and country at large, is reeling under unprecedented medical emergency and there is dire requirement of manpower to run the newly-constructed facilities. While physical infrastructure can be created within days, it is not enough without experienced medical professionals. Thus, it's also an appeal to the students to give their best in these testing times."
"We have also brought in doctors under bond period for the Covid duty in 2020," added the official.
As per the officials, as they would be getting double the bond period for their Covid duty, they can easily complete one year period within six months.
Medical Dialogues had earlier reported that taking note of the gravity of the situation and the increasing numbers of Covid-19 cases in the State, Gujarat Health Department had asked all the final-year medical students across government medical colleges in the State to immediately report for Covid-duty.