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Boosting Availability of medical persons: PM takes effective decisions

To meet the growing need for sufficient human resources for responding to the COVID-19 pandemic in the country today, PM Modi examined the current scenario and took several important decisions which will significantly boost the availability of medical personnel in Covid duty.

As a part of this, a decision was taken to postpone NEET-PG for at least 4 months and the exam will not be held before 31st August 2021. Students will also be given at least one month of time after the notification of the exam before it is held. This will make a large number of qualified doctors available for Covid duties.

To allow deployment of Medical Interns in Covid Management duties under the supervision of their faculty, it was decided to have the Internship rotation. The assistance of Final Year MBBS students can be used for providing services like teleconsultation and monitoring of mild Covid cases after due orientation by and under the supervision of the Faculty, which will help to reduce the workload on existing doctors engaged in Covid duty and provide a boost to efforts of triaging.

Until fresh batches of PG Students have joined, the services of Final Year PG Students (broad as well as super-specialities) as residents may continue to be employed.

Under the supervision of Senior Doctors and Nurses, B.Sc./GNM qualified Nurses may be employed in full-time Covid nursing duties.

The individuals providing services in Covid management will be given priority in forthcoming regular Government recruitments after they complete a minimum of 100 days of Covid duty.

The medical students/professionals asked to be engaged in Covid related work will be suitably vaccinated. All those Health professionals who are thus engaged will be included under the Insurance Scheme of Government for health workers engaged in fighting Covid 19.

The Prime Minister’s Distinguished Covid National Service Samman from the Government of India will be awarded to all such professionals who sign up for minimum of 100 days of Covid duty and complete it successfully.

Doctors, nurses and allied professionals form the backbone of covid management and are also the frontline personnel. Their presence in adequate strength is critical to address the needs of the patients well. The heavenly work and deep commitment of the medical community were taken note of.

On 16th June 2020, the Central Government had issued guidelines to promote the engagement of Doctors/Nurses for Covid duties and special Rs. 15,000 crore Public Health Emergency Support was provided by the Central Government to ramp up facilities and human resources for Covid management. Engaging personnel through the National Health Mission, an additional 2206 specialists, 4685 medical officers and 25,593 staff nurses were recruited through this process.

Details of the key decisions were taken follows :

RELAXATION/FACILITATION/EXTENSION:

Postponement of NEET-PG for at least 4 months: Taking into consideration of the current situation in the wake of the resurgence of COVID – 19, NEET (PG) – 2021 has been postponed. This Exam will not be held before 31st August 2021. At least one month time will be given after the notification of the Examination before it is conducted.

Efforts are made by the State/UT Governments to reach out to each such prospective NEET candidates and ask them to join the Covid – 19 workforce in this hour of need. The services of these MBBS doctors can be used in the management of COVID – 19. The State/UT Governments may now also deploy Medical Interns in Covid Management duties under the supervision of their faculty, as part of the Internship rotation. The services of Final year MBBS students can be employed for providing services like teleconsultation and monitoring of mild Covid cases after due orientation by and under supervision of the Faculty.

Continuation of services of Final year PGs: Until fresh batches of PG Students have joined, the services of Final year PG Students (broad as well as super-specialities) as residents may continue to be utilized. Moreover, the services of the senior residents/registrars may continue to be employed until new recruitments are made.

Nursing personnel: Under the supervision of Senior Doctors and Nurses, B.Sc./GNM Qualified Nurses may be utilized in full-time Covid nursing duties in ICU, etc.. M.Sc. Nursing students, Post basic B.Sc. (N) and Post basic Diploma nursing students are Registered Nursing Officers and their services can be employed to take care of COVID- 19 patients as per the Hospital protocols/policies. Full-time Covid Nursing duties will be given for final year GNM or B.Sc. (Nursing) students awaiting Final Exam at various Government/Private facilities under the supervision of Senior Faculty.

Based on training and certification, the services of Allied Health Care professionals may be utilized for assistance in Covid Management.

The additional human resource thus mobilized will be used only in facilities managing Covid.

INCENTIVES/ RECOGNITION OF SERVICE

A priority will be given for the individuals providing services in Covid management in the forthcoming regular Government recruitments after they complete a minimum of 100 days of Covid duty.

The National Health Mission (NHM) standard for contractual human resource engagement by States/UTs may be considered for implementation of the above-proposed initiative for engaging the additional manpower. Adaptability will be available with States to decide on remuneration as in NHM norms. A suitable honorarium for distinguished Covid Service may also be viewed.

The medical students/professionals sought to be engaged in Covid related work will be suitably vaccinated. All Health professionals thus engaged will be covered under the Insurance Scheme of Government for health workers engaged in fighting Covid 19.

The Prime Minister’s Distinguished Covid National Service Samman from the Government of India will be awarded to all such professionals who sign up for a minimum of 100 days of Covid duty and complete it successfully.

State Governments can make available additional health professionals engaged through this process to private Covid Hospitals as well in surge areas.

Based on NHM norms, the vacant posts of doctors, nurses, allied professionals and other healthcare staff in Health and Medical departments be filled through accelerated processes within 45 days through contractual appointments.

The States/ UTs have been requested to consider the above incentives to maximise manpower availability.

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