The government on Wednesday approved the establishment of 75 new medical colleges and an additional 15,700 new MBBS seats in India by 2021-22. Union Minister Prakash Javadekar announced that the Union Cabinet approved the proposal on Wednesday.
Speaking to the media on Wednesday evening, Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar stated that a total of Rs 24,000 crore would be invested into the new colleges. In addition to undergraduate medical education (MBBS), the colleges will also offer postgraduate medical education. This approval comes under Phase III of the ongoing Centrally Sponsored Scheme.
“In the last 5 years, we have added 45,000 MBBS and PG seats. Till day, there have been 82 colleges added in this time period. Today, we have added another 75 medical schools for the next 3 years.
The new medical colleges are planned to be set up in underserved areas which have no proper medical facilities with at least a 200 bed District Hospital to which they are attached. Districts and District Hospitals with a facility of at least 300 beds will be given preference.
“This is the biggest ever expansion of medical education facilities throughout the world and we have done this in 5 years, this is (set to happen) in the next three years. This is one major decision which will benefit thousands of students everywhere every year and ultimately the poor and rural population will benefit because it will create more facilities in the rural regions and alleviate the adverse patient to doctor ratio,” stated Prakash Javadekar.
The government, as part of Phase I of the scheme, had approved 58 new medical colleges to be established and another 24 were approved to be started under Phase II of the scheme. Of these, 39 colleges have already been started under Phase I and 18 have been approved under Phase II.
The funds to develop the infrastructure of district and referral hospitals as well as for purchasing new equipment required in order to upgrade existing district hospitals into medical colleges will be shared between central and state governments.