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Nowshera Medical College to work under health reforms law

Nowshera Medical College to work under health reforms law

PESHAWAR: The government is starting the newly-built Nowshera Medical College (NMC) under the Medical Teaching Institutions Reforms Act, 2015 to implement its health reforms programme smoothly.

On August 12, the government notified that all the employees appointed at the NMC would work under the MTI and would be required to abide by the law, sources said.

They added the decision was taken to put brakes on unnecessary strikes by associations of health employees to ensure standard education and effective treatment to the people.

The college, which is preparing to start admitting 100 students for academic session starting in November, will also absorb employees of the old district headquarters hospital of Nowshera, who have been recruited by the health department and therefore were civil servants.

The MTI was implemented in four teaching hospitals a few months ago, where half of the employees were civil servants and majority of them were unwilling to work under the MTI. The provincial government has been finding it hard to provide level playing field at those hospitals for implementation of the new law, sources said.

They said that the government’s decision to grant autonomy to NMC would lead to promotion of professional and academic environment at the campus. The problems created by staff of the four teaching hospitals -- Khyber Teaching Hospital, Lady Reading Hospital and Hayatabad Medical Complex, Peshawar and Ayub Teaching Hospital Abbottabad -- in implementation of MTI, is a case in point.

Sources said that it was clearly communicated to all the newly-recruited faculty members and technicians and support staff that they would not be civil servants but would serve under the MTI at the college. The government is also flouting advertisements in newspapers to make it clear to those, who want to work in NMC, that they will not be treated as civil servants.

Sources said that the new staff gave willingness for acceptance of terms and conditions, like they would carry out medical practice inside the hospital premises in the afternoons and quit their private clinics.

The government has also planned to absorb employees of the old district headquarters hospital by giving them option to decide if they want to remain civil servants or work under the MTI. Those opting to become MTI employees would be inducted, sources said.

Prof Mohammad Tahir, project director NMC, told Dawn that they had planned to circulate proformas among the employees to ascertain their willingness to absorb them. He said that government wanted to start the college without any delay this year. “Therefore, we have requested the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC) to carry out inspection of the college in September,” he said.

Dr Tahir, who is also head of the plastic surgery and reconstruction ward at Hayatabad Medical Complex, told Dawn that the college had been allowed by government to admit 100 students subject to PMDC permission.

He said that PMDC’s inspection was desperately needed before the start of the academic year to admit medical students in view of patients’ needs in the district.

“We are prepared to start the college in a portion of the newly-built 500-bed district headquarters hospital while the NMC own building is being built at the cost Rs1.10 billion on the same premises. According to plan, the old DHQ will be shifted to new building and paramedical and nursing schools would be built in its place there,” he said.

Prof Tahir said that they purchased equipments of Rs180 million and Rs100 million would be spent on machines etc in next two years.

Published in Dawn, August 19th, 2015

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