By Sachin Gupta, Chancellor Sanskriti University, Mathura
The COVID-19 has highlighted the deficiencies and challenges in our healthcare sector. Healthcare professionals are facing new obstacles and it shows us what we have done in the medical field so far is not enough. The pandemic has had an unprecedented impact on medical education worldwide, leading to the cancellation of lectures, clinical rotations, and temporary closure of medical colleges and institutions.
As the pandemic has global magnitude, naturally there is a global effort to contain it. There is a lot of learning from this for the medical students in terms of newer skills and attitudes. Most experts are convinced that these skills and attitudes will be even more crucial in the coming years.
In the changing scenario, the role of the doctor must constantly evolve to meet the needs of an unpredictably changing environment and to fulfill the needs of society. Therefore, medical students should prepare to engage in such cases in the future.
Upskilling and reskilling is an integral part of developing skills and also become necessary to stay competitive in today’s world given the changes brought by technologies and even societal shifts. Medical professionals are also expected to keep themselves up to date with the latest developments in clinical sciences and medical technologies.
The curriculum is yet to catch up to the global standards of medicine and education because the degree earned by Medical graduates today is with limited or no exposure to new technologies, so the skills they are learning have to be updated too.
To develop critical knowledge and understanding of medical education there is need of proper training, infrastructure, and guidelines, which is lacking in online learning. So additional training is required for those in the medical and healthcare services.
Today the process of treating a patient requires a communicative approach that involves technical expertise with good communication skills apart from just clinical expertise.
In this global Pandemic the role of the doctor to foresee and adapt to potential healthcare challenges are increased. Here are some details where aspiring medical students need to pay more attention.
The number of students who appeared in NEET 2020 were low as compared to previous years and it indicates many students took the year as a break year. This means fresh Class XII pass-outs will face tough competition from break-year students. They will face a heavily revised syllabus, tough question papers, and tougher evaluations.
The pandemic has increased the stress of everyone and students are not immune to it. Due to the highly demanding course, there are many reasons for stress which causes various adverse impacts on students’ physical and psychological health. Not being able to do the practice for the subjects in the lab is adding extra stress.
Orthodox syllabus and teaching style
In the current digital era, there are many changes in the medical field, but the medical syllabus is not updated. New opportunities in medical science are barely touched. Study patterns are teacher-centered which doesn’t use technology as much as it is used abroad. It leads to a compromise in the quality of doctors. The traditional medical curriculum should be improvised with communication skills in the form of Continuous Medical Education (CME), to encourage students with proper training to develop good communication skills.
Promote a healthy lifestyle
A healthy lifestyle can be promoted through nutritious foods and hygiene for that it is a relevant and important strategy to involve nutrition education, as part of the curriculum of schools and colleges and reducing the burden of malnutrition and obesity. For that, it is needed to launch a nationwide social movement for better nutritional outcomes – through expanded actionable partnerships with agencies and institutions by creating a nutritional resource network of technical and educational institutions such as medical colleges, home science colleges, etc.