Saturday, January 30, 2010

Health Minister DG : Don't extend Compulsory Service

To be fair, here is an article about the responce of the DG, Ismail Merican :

ISMAIL: We are shortening public service period from three to two yearsKUALA LUMPUR: The proposal to extend the compulsory public service for doctors from the current three years to five or 10 years, was met with disapproval by the Health Ministry director-general Tan Sri Dr Haji Mohd Ismail Merican.
Ismail, who is also president of the Malaysian Medical Centre, said we have to be fair to the doctors.
"I disagree with the proposal because whether the doctors are serving the government or otherwise, they are still serving the country," he said, in an email reply to The Malay Mail.
"In fact, we are going to shorten the compulsory period to two years instead of the current three years."
The current housemanship period for medical graduates is five years, comprising two years of housemanship and three years of compulsory service.
The housemanship period was extended last year, from only a year in three compulsory disciplines (with four months for each posting) to the current two years which enables the doctors to be trained in six disciplines (also four months for each posting).
"We are planning to shorten the compulsory period as the housemanship period is now two years and not like before," said Ismail.
When asked how the country could overcome the shortage of doctors, he said the ministry is doing all it can to solve the problem.
"We are providing more incentives to retain the doctors who are in service, attracting Malaysian doctors from overseas, allowing locums, providing extra allowances for overtime and making arrangements to hire foreign doctors to work with us on fellowship programmes."
Ismail was responding to a Bernama report that the government is considering extending the compulsory public service period for medical graduates.
In the Jan 27 report, Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Senator Datuk T. Murugiah was quoted as saying that last year, the country faced a shortage of 5,000 doctors and the government's adoption of the proposal would mean that doctors would be able to garner more experience before they move on to the private sector or set up their own practice.
Murugiah had also said the compulsory public service system has been applied since 1971 and that there is a need to have a new mechanism, but he acknowledged that it is for the Health Ministry, Economic Planning Unit and the Public Service Department to decide on the matter.

Source : Malay Mail

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