By NewsGram Staff Writer
July 2015: Last month, Reuters carried a special report titled “Why India’s medical schools are plagued with fraud?” that exposed various kinds of corruption that ail Indian medical schools.
They investigated into the working of the Muzaffarnagar Medical College, which is located 80 miles northeast of New Delhi. The college has been found to be using fake “patients” in its hospitals whenever there is a government inspection to check whether there were enough patients to provide students with adequate clinical experience.
The report claims that through a four-month investigation, they have documented the full extent of the fraud in India’s medical education system.
Some of the highlights of the report that bring forward the extent of corruption in the medical system are as follows-
1. Among the 398 medical schools present in the country, one out of every six of them have been accused of cheating.
2. To pass government inspections, medical colleges regularly use recruitment agencies to hire doctors to pose as full time faculties.
3. The medical colleges also hire healthy people to act as patients during inspections.
4. According to government records, since 2010 at least 69 medical colleges and teaching hospitals have been accused of frauds ranging from hiring doctors and fake patients to rigging entrance exams and accepting bribes.
5. Bribery is very rampant. Medical schools accept bribes under the guise of donations. The Medical Council of India which is supposed to regulate medical education itself mired in various lawsuits.
6. The crisis of the Indian medical system can been seen manifested in Indian doctors practicing abroad as well. According to Britain’s General Medical Council’s record, between 2008 and 2014, Indian-trained doctors were four times more likely to lose their right to practice than British-trained doctors.
7. According to Indian Medical Association, about 45% of the people who practice medicine in India have no formal training.
8. The medical education in India began to decline after the change in law in 1990’s which made the process of opening private colleges in India a lot easier.Many of the private colleges have been set up by businessmen and politicians who have no experience in the medical field. This has resulted in corruption and poor education resulting in poor quality of doctors who pass out of these colleges.
The investigation also unearthed an email from Hi Impact Consultants to a doctor in New Delhi, offering to pay an amount of Rs-20,000/- a day, if the doctor agreed to appear for an inspection at Saraswathi Institute of Medical Sciences in Hapur, east of New Delhi.
As if to demonstrate that every cloud has a silver lining, the report quotes David Gordon, the president of World Federation for Medical Education as saying- “The best medical schools in India are absolutely world class”.