Hundreds of professors and lecturers from various government and medical colleges run by Gujarat Medical Education and Research Society (GMERS) have also staged protests across the state over their long unresolved demands, including payment of arrears as recommended by the 7th Pay Commission.
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The Center has recently suspended the counseling of NEET-PG 2021 till January next year on some issues and has also informed the Supreme Court about it. The national qualification for the postgraduate (NEET-PG) course is conducted for fields such as the Cum Entrance Test Master of Surgery and Doctor of Medicine. Counseling is part of the admissions process.
“Normally, postgraduates are admitted in May. Now, due to the suspension of counseling, a new batch of PG students will arrive in March next year. Thus, instead of three batches, only two batches of resident physicians are attending all. The pressure has increased, “said a protesting doctor in Surat.
Another medical student suggested that the government was considering hiring outside doctors in government-run hospitals, which are affiliated to medical colleges, until the new PG batch arrives.
In a statement, the Junior Doctors Association (JDA) of BJ Medical College in Ahmedabad claimed that all medical colleges in the country were facing acute shortage of manpower due to the “continuous suspension” of NEET-PG counseling.
“As a result, in the absence of a new PG batch, only 66 per cent of residential doctors are available to treat patients. This is putting an additional strain on residential doctors who are already suffering from long COVID-19 responsibilities,” said JDA President Dr Biswajit Raj.
“Thus, about 1,500 resident doctors across the state will be away from OPD (outpatient department) work from 9am to 5pm on Monday as part of our protest,” he said.
Patients will not suffer because of the strike because residential doctors will be available to perform emergency duties, he said.
Meanwhile, hundreds of professors and lecturers affiliated with the Gujarat Medical Teachers Association (GMTA) and three other similar bodies in the state gathered outside various medical colleges in the state to register their protest against some of their long pending demands.
“We are not on strike. As part of our protest, we will continue our work after the black band in our hands. Our main demands are payment of arrears, higher non-practicing allowance for teachers and salary increase as recommended by the 7th Pay Commission. Maximum monthly salary cap.” GMTA President Dr. Rajneesh Patel said.
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