“Medical Curriculum Will Have To Adapt To Post-COVID-19 Era”: Union Minister Jitendra Singh
Union minister Jitendra Singh, while addressing an online conference with the heads and representatives of national medical teaching institutes, said that medical curriculum will have to adapt itself in the post-COVID-19 era; with a renewed focus on infectious diseases.
Union minister Jitendra Singh on Monday said medical curriculum will have to adapt itself in the post-COVID-19 era as there is going to be a renewed focus on the study and management of infectious diseases. Addressing an online conference with the heads and representatives of national medical teaching institutes, he said coronavirus has suddenly awakened the whole world, particularly the medical fraternity, to realise that the age of infections is far from over.
Mr. Singh said the Indian medical fraternity has an advantage over their western counterparts because the practice of medicine in the country was inherently tuned to prescriptions based on hygiene and prevention of cross infections. Therefore, the miniater said, in the wake of COVID-19, Indian medical fraternity was quick to re-orient itself to the new norms of medical management, according to a Personnel Ministry statement.
“The leading academic institutions of India owe the responsibility to re-emphasise certain aspects of medical curriculum because these are the institutions which actually enjoy the distinction of training the teachers for nearly 400 medical colleges spread across the country. We may get over the coronavirus, but this may not be the last virus to confront,” the minister said.
In the last three decades, the disease spectrum in India shifted to non-communicable diseases and hence, the medical teaching got focussed more on metabolic and vascular disorders like diabetes mellitus, coronary heart diseases, etc, while the infectious diseases took a back seat with the advent of superior anti-microbial drugs, Mr. Singh said.
The Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances, and Pensions also said there is going to be renewed focus on the study and management of infectious diseases in the post-COVID-19 era and the medical curriculum will have to adapt itself accordingly.
The institutions like AIIMS, New Delhi and PGI Chandigarh have always taken a lead, he said and hoped that new protocols for the new norms in medical teaching and management will also emerge from these institutes.
Mr. Singh said medicos from several western countries were deputed to India to do their internship in tropical diseases, because these diseases were hardly prevalent there. Many of the western researchers come to India to do their research on diseases like tuberculosis, leprosy and sexually transmitted diseases, Mr. Singh, a renowned diabetologist, said.
Those who made their presentations at the conference included Jagat Ram from PGI Chandigarh, Shakti Gupta from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi, P Bhattacharya from North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences (NEIGRIHMS), Shillong, A Shanta Singh from Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS), Manipur, A G Ahangar from Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS), Srinagar and Nasib Chand Digra from GMC Jammu.