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House surgeons stipend issue stays unresolved

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    07 May 2018

TCMC, which was petitioned in 2016, now asks govt to look into complaints

The issue of non-payment of house surgeons’ stipend, as stipulated by the government, by private self-financing medical colleges in the State has come one full circle with the Travancore Cochin Medical Council (TCMC) now asking the State government to look into the issue again.

The TCMC, which had been petitioned in 2016 regarding the non-payment of the stipend, had tried to push the matter to the Medical Council of India, which pointed out in September 2017 that the matter did not come within its purview. The TCMC has now asked the government as to what may be done regarding the complaints.

The government had issued an order in June 2015, hiking the monthly stipend of house surgeons in all government, private, and self-financing medical colleges in the State from ₹15,000 to ₹20,000 with effect from April 2015.

In May 2016, 100-odd house surgeons at Dr. Somervell Memorial CSI Medical College and Hospital at Karakonam went on a strike saying that they were being paid just ₹3,975 a month as stipend, while the management was legally bound to pay them ₹20,000, as fixed by the government.

Following the strike, K.V. Babu, a physician based in Payyannur, had raised the issue with TCMC. He said the director of the Karakonam medical college had committed professional misconduct by denying house surgeons the legitimate stipend.

“It is now up to the government to ensure that the order regarding house surgeons’ stipend is implemented by private medical colleges. House surgeons in these institutions even now are paid in the range of ₹3,000-₹12,000 though they are doing the same work as that of their counterparts in government medical colleges. For many students who had secured admission under government quota, the stipend is very important,” Dr. Babu points out.

The Registrar of the Kerala University of Health Sciences had issued a circular in January 2016 to the principals of all self-financing medical colleges affiliated to KUHS that the interns of undergraduate and PG courses be paid stipend on par with their counterparts in government medical colleges. This was also ignored by private colleges.

IMA campaign

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) has now drawn attention to the fact that house surgeons in many private self financing medical colleges were being paid just ₹2,000 a month. Even the PG doctors were being paid not more than ₹25,000 in these institutions.

The IMA has demanded that house surgeons be paid a minimum of ₹30,000 a month and PG doctors, ₹60,000.

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