The Union government has sanctioned as many as 157 new medical schools over the past seven years with an investment of more than Rs 17,000 crore, the Union Health Ministry said on Sunday. When completed, nearly 16,000 undergraduate medical places would be added to these colleges, of which 6,500 places are already operational in 64 new medical schools, he added.
Meanwhile, Rs.2451.1 crore is also provided to state governments or central government medical colleges for upgrading existing infrastructure and adding additional seats.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare also said that as part of central government programs, medical schools are being opened in districts so far without public medical schools.
“In this case, preference is given to underserved, backward and ambitious districts,” the ministry said.
According to the Union Ministry, the programs will address the shortage of manpower in the medical sector as well as the geographical imbalance in the availability of qualified medical manpower across the country.
Improving tertiary care in the public sector is also on the agenda of central plans, the ministry said.
“This will increase the availability of health professionals, correct the existing geographic imbalance in the distribution of medical schools, promote affordable medical training and make use of the existing infrastructure of district hospitals,” he added.