Published: 27th November 2021
Resident doctors in Central hospitals of Delhi protest over delayed NEET PG counselling
AIIMS Resident Doctors' Association urged the Government of India to actively intervene in the matter and expedite the counselling process
Resident doctors of three Central hospitals in Delhi - Ram Manohar Lohia (RML) Hospital, Safdarjung Hospital and Lady Hardinge Hospital -- on November 27, suspended outpatient department (OPD) services in protest against the repeated delay in conducting NEET PG 2021, counselling.
The move was following a nationwide call by the Federation of Resident Doctors' Association (FO-RDA) for suspension of OPD services at hospitals from November 27. "Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, admission to various courses in NEET PG 2021, has been delayed indefinitely. The residents are carrying both COVID and non-COVID services tirelessly in the last one-and-a-half years and they are exhausted, both physically and mentally," FORDA said in a letter to the Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandviya a day earlier.
"They have been waiting patiently to date for some positive outcome of the Supreme Court proceedings in the matter of already delayed NEET PG 2021 counselling. However, there seems no respite to their physical and mental distress, with the next court hearing scheduled on January 6, 2022," the letter read.
The RML RDA wrote a letter to its hospital administration, in which it said, "To mark our protest against these repeated delays and postponement in counselling, we the residents of Atal Bihari Vajpayee Institute of Medical Sciences and Dr RML hospital decide to withdraw OPD services on Saturday, November 27, onwards, including Sunday OPDS." The doctors' associations demanded the government and the top court to take necessary measures to expedite the NEET PG counselling and the admission process and to fast-track the court proceedings.
Issuing support, AIIMS RDA also urged the Government of India to actively intervene in this matter and expedite the counselling process, stating it is extremely unfortunate that NEET-PG 2021 counselling is being delayed indefinitely despite the fact that nearly two months have passed since the results of the entrance test were announced.
The entrance exam that usually happens in the first quarter of the calendar year was already delayed by many months as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This extreme delay has led to a shortage of manpower in medical colleges across India, the AIIMS RDA said in a statement. "Thousands of postgraduate seats will remain unfilled this year if the counselling remains postponed. As COVID-19 cases are increasing in many countries across the world, it is prudent that our nation remains prepared for another wave of the pandemic," the statement said.
"The current working pool of resident doctors are already overburdened, which can have an adverse impact on optimum delivery of healthcare services. The admission process of the new batch of residents should therefore be completed without any further delay," reads the statement.