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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 280-285

Increase in the number of MBBS seats through the scheme of one medical college per district: The debate on quality versus quantity and opportunity to strengthen family physician system In India

Independent Researcher & National President, Academy of Family Physicians of India, Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Raman Kumar
Academy of Family Physicians of India, 049, Crema Tower, Mahagun Mascot, Crossing Republik Ghaziabad - 201 016, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JME.JME_147_22

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India currently hosts the largest medical education system in the world with 650 medical colleges and 98613 MBBS (undergraduate) training seats. The reasons for Indian Medical Graduate's international migration and internal distribution within India have been multifactorial. There are push factors (with India) as well as pull factors (international host countries). Almost the same reasons are implied to the distribution and availability of the medical workforce geographically within India. To address the regional disparities in medical education and the availability of human resources in health, the policy of establishing one medical college in each district in India was initiated. Impressive progress has been achieved so far. However, the policymakers must look at it critically to be able to steer this project towards meeting the public health objectives of the country in the coming century. The discussion must include arguments on the type of doctor India needs. Indian can no longer afford the policy of having many cardiologists as compared to miniscule number of trained family physicians. All specialist system is being perused at the cost of a generalist health system. This paper critically looks at the district medical college scheme and exponential growth in the number of medical seats in India. Statistical success alone cannot address the public health needs and medical care of the Indian population. The creation of the National Medical Commission (NMC) has eased the criteria for recognition of new medical colleges; however, several limitations of the Medical Council of India are being carried forward within the functioning of NMC. Unless, there is a focus on creating employment and retaining medical graduates within the health system, it is worthless producing millions of them.

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