India has a great history of how medical education was set-up in India and how the journey to the highest number of medical colleges began. In the ancient period, students from faraway lands came to the ‘gurukuls’ to study ayurvedic medicines and diseases. Now known as doctors, in the period of kshatriyas, they were called ‘Vedic gurus’ and ‘dai maa’. They used herbal plants and seeds, ‘Leps’ form different ingredients to treat different illnesses. It was only after the British colonization modern medicine was introduced in India. The first medical college was established in Kolkata in 1835 and therefore the foundation of the Indian medical system was laid.
Since then, the system is prospering and improvising its education model to keep up with the new sciences and create doctors that will know how to treat new-age diseases. But today the Indian medical education system is not that good. It lacks quality and ability to stabilize the Indian healthcare system. The effects of the deficiency in the system are seen through malnutrition in most of the children, a scary doctor-patient ratio in both rural and urban areas, and social stigma regarding mental health and women’s health.
Some of the major faults in the Indian Medical Education System is:
Outdated syllabus and unskilled teachers
The entire syllabus is based on an evidence-based and research-based education. The students are taught in a teacher-centric pattern which keeps them away from learning new domains of sciences and makes them stuck in traditional methods of learning rather than using advanced technology. Subjects are taught isolated from one another and students are not given enough clinical exposure. The syllabus is completely outdated as compared to medical schools in other countries. Teachers are chosen not on the basis of their clinical knowledge and experience but on the basis of the degrees they have.
Lack of social accountability
Medical education doesn’t provide any knowledge about the needs of society and expectations. The students do not receive any kind of training or knowledge regarding social stigmas, communication techniques which will teach them how to behave in different social medical situations.
Privatization has put quality education in danger
In India, one can easily get into a medical college if she/he pays a hefty amount of fees to private colleges. Also, It is the only country to allow sales of medical seats. All the private medical colleges are funded by businessmen and politicians which results in the commercialisation of education. Also, students are forced to carry out unneeded practices and diagnosis in order to make up for the money spent on getting the degree
These three are the major problems of the Indian Medical Education system. They keep the system from evolving and keeping up with the advanced sciences and knowledge. India needs to considerably reconsider and re-evaluate all facets of its programs to foster creativity and meet the global standards of medical education. This can be accomplished only by a concerted effort by all those interested in medical education, combined with a desire to develop the nation’s healthcare.