The association representing parents of around 600 medical students on Tuesday questioned again why only two medical colleges in the state were forcing Covid duty on final year undergraduate medical students. The students have also challenged the decision in Gujarat High Court, which will hear the issue on Wednesday.
In July, NHL Municipal Medical College, Ellisbridge, managed by the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation Medical Education Trust (AMCMET), and LG Medical College, Maninagar, made COVID-19 duty mandatory for their final year Part I and II MBBS students. The two colleges also issued a notice to students warning that strict action would be taken against them if they failed to comply with the circular.
“Authorities of the two colleges first threatened the students, and are now invoking moral and ethical duty… We want to know why only two out of 22 medical colleges in the state are discriminating against their own students by making Covid-19 duty mandatory for them when other colleges are being considerate,” the Gujarat Medicos Parents Association, which represents parents of more than 600 final year medical students studying in the two colleges, said.
The association said that on completion of their studies, the students are required to work under the guidance of medical experts.
“Final year students are not qualified medical professionals until they clear their exams and complete their internships. Assigning Covid-19 duty to them on the basis of a single day’s training can be dangerous for students as well as patients. Rather than forcing final year students to compromise on their studies just a few months before their exams, the AMC should hire trained staff for Covid-19 duty.
This will also benefit thousands of unemployed nursing students and doctors (BHMS & BAMS),” said Deepak Vyas, one of the parents representing the association. The association said that as per the guidelines of the Medical Council of India and the Union Health Ministry, students are not supposed to be deputed for clinical duties.
“In their attempt to force Covid-19 duty on medical students, the two colleges are not only playing with the career of hundreds of students, but are also violating rules,” the association said.
The parents’ body reiterated that the students would have happily joined Covid-19 duty in any other situation. “The students will end up harming their career if they accept the Covid-19 duty just 4-5 months before their exams, and hence they are opposing it,” it added.
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