Foreign docs making beeline for training at AIIMS

May 20th, 2008 - 9:58 am ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Anbumani Ramadoss
By Prashant K. Nanda
New Delhi, May 20 (IANS) Of late, doctors from all over the world, including developed nations like Sweden, Singapore and Italy, have been vying to get trained at the premier All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) here. Doctors at AIIMS say the trend is not very old. In the last couple of years, nearly 20 medical professionals from countries like Sweden, Australia, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia, Romania, Nepal and Bangladesh have already received training there.

“India is now a country oozing with confidence - be it economy or healthcare. Earlier, foreigners coming to India to get trained was almost unthinkable but now it’s a fact,” said D.K. Gupta, head of the department of paediatric surgery.

Surgery, particularly paediatric surgery, is one of the most sought after fields among the foreign doctors coming to AIIMS.

“At any given point of time, we have 10 to 15 applications pending with us. Currently, at least 11 applications are with us, including three each from North Korea and Saudi Arabia and two each from Italy and Romania. One application has come from the US,” Gupta told IANS.

AIIMS is said to be the best public sector medical college and research centre in India and treats nearly 8,000 patients daily.

Many health experts and even Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss have alleged that students get quality education for a subsidised fee at AIIMS but leave the country for greener pastures like the US and Britain.

Gupta, who heads the Asian Paediatric Surgeons’ Association, however, said those who are coming to get trained at AIIMS are not students.

“They are senior doctors and professors. They are ready to come to Delhi at their own expense, take care of their own board and lodging and get trained in our institute,” said Gupta, who has trained over 10 such doctors.

“The training for these foreign doctors ranges between one month and three months. They interact with us, attend our classes, and observe the surgeries in operation theatres.

“Out of a number of applications, we select two to three names for training at any point of time. The amount of work they observe (in sheer numbers) gives them huge exposure, the like and range of which they are unlikely to get in their countries. Even some diseases are unique in this part of the world that the foreign doctors want to know about to keep themselves updated,” he added.

“The world community is keen to utilise the excellence of India and observe us achieving the best. For many, we provide best first hand learning experience,” Gupta said.

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