On February 1, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union Budget 2020, which she said represented three major themes - aspirational India, economic development and building a caring society that is humane.
Sitharaman expanded on the third topic under 'Aspirational India' talking about education and skill development. Under the Union Budget 2020, Rs 99,300 cr has been allotted for the Education sector and Rs 3,300 crore for skills development.
With special reference to medical education, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman proposed the building of medical colleges in existing district hospitals to meet the shortage of medical doctors in the country.
"There is a shortage of medical doctors both general practitioners as well as specialists. In order to meet this requirement, it is proposed to attach a medical college to an existing district hospital in PPP mode," said the Finance Minister.
The PPP (Public-Private-Partnership) model is a funding model for a public infrastructure project where the cost of building the infrastructure is borne through public-private partnerships.
The Finance Minister also announced that the states that were looking to build the facilities for a medical college in hospitals would receive special aid from the Centre. "Those states that fully allow facilities of the hospital to the medical college and wish to provide land at a concession would receive viability gap funding from Centre. Details of the scheme would be worked out soon. So we aim to have, at a district level, more medical and training colleges," said Nirmala Sitharaman.
"National Board of Examination imparts PG medical qualifications, diploma and fellow of National Board, DNB and FNB. The government will, therefore, encourage large hospitals, with sufficient capacity to offer resident doctors the DNB and FNB courses under the National Board of Examination," said Nirmala Sitharaman.
Under the Union Budget 2020, the Finance Minister also spoke about how there was an international demand for medical staff such as nurses and caregivers. She stated that India could fulfill that demand if necessary training was imparted to our medical staff to learn the requirements that were needed for international employment.
"There is a huge demand for teachers, nurses, caregivers and paramedical staff abroad, however, their skill sets do not match the employer standards, therefore, they need to be improved. I propose that a special bridge course be designed by Ministries of Health, Skill Development together with bodies. The language requirements of various countries should also be included. This can be achieved through a special training package," said Nirmala Sitharaman.