Country has 99 specialists with 61 in country and rest 38 are outside: PM

During the Fourth Session of the Third Parliament, Member of Parliament of Nanglam Constituency, MP Choida Jamtsho highlighted on the shortages of health specialists across all dzongkhags and regional, and other hospitals. The MP said currently, the country has 13 Gynecologist specialists, 15 medical specialists, 15 surgeons and 12 pediatricians.

However, there are not enough health specialist in other dzongkhags and district hospitals.

In line with the government’s pledge, MP Choida Jamtsho requested the Prime Minister to kindly report to the House about the plans and programmes of deploying medical specialists in Dzongkhags, regional and other hospitals.

In response to the MP’s question, Prime Minister (Dr) Lotay Tshering said, to have specialist, it takes five years to complete MBBS and it takes almost 9 to 12 years to have one specialist.

The Prime Minister said due to a shortage of medical specialists in the country, the government has been bringing in specialist from outside the country. Now Samtse hospital has four medical specialists, similarly, Bajo Hospital in Wangdi has 4 specialists. PM said Phuentsholing Thromde has about 27,000 people and how the hospital has 7 specialists. In Gelephu Regional Hospital, they have altogether have 21 doctors and specialists and 27 doctors and specialists in Mongar Regional Referral Hospital. A new hospital in Dewathang is almost completed and the health ministry has already planned as to how many doctors and medical specialist will be deployed.

The Prime Minister said the country is not short of MBBS doctors but in need of specialists and the Prime Minister explained that if the country waits for the in-country specialist, it will still not be enough in the country, so the PM said there is a need to look for specialists from outside the country also.

Currently, the country has a total of 99 medical specialists. 61 specialists are in the country and the rest 38 are outside. PM also said that the government has planned to build 60 to 70 bedded Infectious Disease Hospital in Taba, Thimphu and also 100 bedded dedicated National Infectious Disease Hospital will be built in Gidakom Hospital.

The PM said the government has been prioritizing health system in the country.

The DNT manifesto says, “We want you to have access to quality health care wherever and whenever you need it. We will review staff strength in all health centers, weigh it against patient load and ensure that we have enough doctors, nurses and medical staff to meet patients’ needs.”

It also says, “Instead of promising three doctors in every district, we will send more doctors to hospitals with higher patient load to ensure efficient service. We will reduce waiting time in hospitals and enable you to complete your visit in the shortest time possible.”

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