To strengthen medical education, the National Board of Examinations (NBE) has started inspections of district hospitals in Jammu and Kashmir where Diplomate in National Board courses would be started.
An official in the Health and Medical Education department said, to start the DNB courses in district hospitals, the NBE has inspected surgery department of district hospital Poonch in the first phase.
“Shortly the inspections would commence in district hospital Pulwama, Kupwara and Jawahar Lal Nehru Memorial (JLNM) hospital Srinagar which would be completed within a month,” he said.
The NBE is monitoring the process of inspections and based on its report, the postgraduate seats are given to district hospitals.
NBE has already given seats to Government Medical College Srinagar and Jammu in super specialities and candidates have joined the colleges.
Initially, the health department would start the PG courses in six district hospitals in Jammu and Kashmir that include JLNM hospital Srinagar, Kupwara, Pulwama, Poonch, Gandinagar and Udhampur hospital.
The official said next year they would start DNB courses in rest of the district hospitals that require enhancement of bed strength as per NBE requirements.
In April this year, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India deputed a team of senior officials to J&K to assess the feasibility to start the PG courses in various disciplines in district hospitals.
The process is being monitored by Financial Commissioner, Health and Medical Education department Atal Dulloo and Mission Director, National Health Mission, Bupinder Kumar.
An official in the health department said the DNB courses are expected to be “game changer” for health sector which could help the health department to post specialists in the rural hospitals, facing dearth of specialist doctors.
“It will help to get rid of the problems the health care system is facing. This will improve services and help decongest tertiary care hospitals. Also it would boost faculty in medical colleges,” he said.
As per doctors, the tertiary care hospitals continue to bear the brunt of huge patient referral with rural hospitals lagging behind in patient care.
They said the Standard Operating Procedures issued last year by the health department for patient referrals are not being followed in all hospitals pushing patients to the wall.