Until now, incentive marks were only given to those government doctors working in hilly and remote areas.

NEET exam Move to grant incentive marks to govt doctors working in rural areas draws flak
news NEET exam Tuesday, April 10, 2018 - 12:22

Doctors and PG aspirants in Tamil Nadu have slammed the recent amendments to the PG Medical Education Regulations, 2000, made by the Medical Council of India (MCI), which now will award incentive marks to doctors working in rural government hospitals. This will now be added to NEET scores and the final rank will be based on that.

Until now, incentive marks were only given to those government doctors who are working in remote and hilly regions.

Dr Ravindranath, General Secretary, Doctor’s Association for Social Equality, says, “The percentage of incentive marks and the percentage of quota reservation for service doctors should be decided by the state government. The MCI should not interfere in these matters.”

Experts say that giving incentive marks can be problematic, given the working and living conditions vary considerably across rural and remote and hilly areas.

“Some doctors are posted in areas where they have to take a boat to reach the place. Some of these places are yet to get electricity. Doctors find it very difficult to get back to their families in the case of a personal emergency,” says Dr Ranjith, Assistant Surgeon in the Tamil Nadu government

Hence, there needs to be a clear-cut distinction on what percentage of marks should be given to whom, depending on the area of service and the number of years served.

Dr Ranjith adds, “We don’t want the non-government doctors, i.e., the private candidates to get affected by this amendment. The service quota percentage system and the incentive marks should be framed in such a way that even private candidates look at government services as an attractive option.”

PG aspirants who are not part of the government services are not very happy with the amendment. “This amendment is a huge setback for all the non-service doctors in Tamil Nadu. I did not apply for state counselling because I knew that I wouldn’t get a seat. Last year, doctors working in all the public health centers qualified for incentive marks. Even those PHCs which are in the city. This is unfair. This just makes me want to sit back and watch the seats being taken away,”  says Dr Manikandan, a PG aspirant with no government service background.

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