India should train its doctors in infectious diseases

Last Updated: Sunday, August 16, 2009 - 00:00

Washington: With India battling swine flu, an eminent Indian-American doctor has said it is the right time the government in the country accelerates process of training its doctors in infectious diseases or else it could be too late to bring the situation under control.

With a country of a billion plus population, India is literally sitting on a time bomb of infectious disease, and it is quite depressing that the Indian Government and the health officials despite knowing this fact are reluctant to accelerate the process in this regard, Dr Navin Shah, One of the founders of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) and its past president, said.

Dr Shah says he has been unsuccessfully campaigning in New Delhi for the last three years to push India to train its doctors in infectious diseases (ID).

"There are over 50 million infectious disease patients in India and has no specialist. Compared to this, in US, where deaths due to ID are minuscule, there are about 6,000 ID specialists," Shah, who hails from the Pune city, said in an interview.

A country of one billion people needs at least 15,000 ID specialists.

Maryland-based urologist, Dr Shah says there are no takers in New Delhi for his proposal to train at least one Indian doctor free of cost in US on infectious diseases.

Bureau Report



First Published: Sunday, August 16, 2009 - 00:00

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