More incentives demanded for doctors wanting to serve in villages


TNN | Updated: Feb 1, 2017, 10.46 AM IST

NAGPUR: From the total funds of Rs 1,600 crore allocated to All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), the city is hoping to get Rs 250 crore in this year’s union budget.

Dr Viral Kamdar is advisor to union minister of road transport and highways Nitin Gadkari and is looking after the Nagpur AIIMS project. He said, “Even with the limited budget, 70% share is given to the limited diseases which are mostly seen in elite class. While diseases like sickle cell and tuberculosis, which affect masses, are allotted the rest of the 30% funds. Ideally, the allocation should be the opposite.”

A few days ago, state finance minister Sudhir Mungantiwar had told TOI, “I am expecting that drugs used for cancer and kidney treatment, and medical equipment for dialysis may continue to be exempted from all taxes even after the execution of Goods and Services Tax (GST).” Mungantiwar has also written to Union finance minister Arun Jaitley and has sought GST exemption in this regard.

Orange City Hospital and Research Institute (OCHRI) director Dr Anup Marar, who is secretary of Vidarbha Hospital Association (VHA), said, “Government should increase number of government medical colleges to produce more doctors in modern medicine rather than taking shallow short-term irrational decisions like licensing AYUSH doctors to practice modern medicine.”

Dr Marar said, “To attract doctors to serve in rural areas, government should provide tax benefits, better connectivity and infrastructure along with good education facilities for their children. Doctors should get long-term tax subsidies and low-interest soft loans to start clinics and hospitals in remote areas so that more and more doctors can contemplate on investing their money and professional expertise in such regions.”

The couple Shantanu Das and Archana Das have been instrumental in organizing independent cancer awareness camps in different parts of the city. Talking to TOI, they said, “There is a growing rate of cancer patients every year due to the changing lifestyle and growing pollution. While the treatment and medicine is extremely expensive, cancer affects people from every stratum.

“The elite class can manage the expense, there is already a respite for Below Poverty Line (BPL) patients as they all come under Rajeev Gandhi Jeevan Dayee Yojna, but what about the middle class? It’s becoming tough for the middle class to bear the cost, which runs into lakhs. We don’t expect complete respite but some kind of subsidy needs to be given.”

Courtesy: The Times of India


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