Three top professors have left the faculty for greener pastures over the last six months, a development which insiders say is unprecedented in AIIMS history.
The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), the country’s premier institute in the field of medicine, is finding it difficult to retain talent. Three top professors have left the faculty for greener pastures over the last six months, a development which insiders say is unprecedented in AIIMS history.
Dr BS Sharma, senior professor from neuro-surgery, who was a member of AIIMS faculty for more than 25 years, has joined a private medical institute in Jaipur while another professor from the department, Dr Sumit Sinha has moved to Paras Hospitals, a super speciality medicare chain. Dr Sinha served AIIMS for over a decade. The third one to leave is Dr Pravash Mishra from hematology department, who has joined Max Healthcare.
“The migration of faculty has severely affected key areas of healthcare like liver transplantation services, renal transplantation, high quality paediatric medicine and general medicine services,” noted the Faculty Association of AIIMS (FAAIIMS) in a letter sent to director Randeep Guleria on July 25. Mail Today has a copy of the letter.
The FAAIIMS has also sent their demands to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union health minister JP Nadda, requesting them to take action to stem the migration.
Reacting to the issue and the letter sent to health ministry, Union health secretary CK Mishra said, “AIIMS doctors get salaries which is very different from other government hospitals. However, the ministry is looking into the matter.”
“It has never happened in the history of AIIMS,” a senior faculty member, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told Mail Today.
“These top doctors are migrating from AIIMS as they are not getting appropriate salaries, suitable accommodation and have administrative issues. The worrying part is that in some of the departments where the faculty faces the brain drain, the waiting list of patients stretches till 2019-2020.”
“Not just the veteran but even the younger faculty is getting distraught with the functioning of the institution.
“In last three years, approximately 17 young faculty members have resigned because of poor salary and non-availability of accommodation,” the faculty member said.
The FAAIIMS letter also points out that senior most faculty members “get no promotion for 15 to 20 years”. This translates into static or slow raise in their incomes.
“An assistant professor’s existing pay band and grade pay is Rs 15,600-39,100 with minimum scale of Rs 30,000.
“Suppose, this pay-band gets him a take-home amount of Rs 1 lakh. If the same doctor applies to a private institution, particularly with AIIMS experience, he is likely to get three times of his current pay. Why would he stay on?”
NEW PAY BANDS
“We want that the new faculty which is coming should be given pay band 4 so that they straightway come to the new level 13. With this, AIIMS can attract bright faculty for the future,” said another senior member of AIIMS faculty.
The Seventh Pay Commission recommendations are yet to be implemented for the AIIMS faculty. At present, it has been enforced only for staff group B, C and D.
In February this year, a committee was formed for the implementation of revised pay rules and the matter was discussed that pay scale should be made higher and new allowances should be given to the faculty.