Madhya Pradesh: Teaching MBBS in Hindi is a good idea, but medical experts ask where are the quality textbooks?

Although the government of Madhya Pradesh has taken the innovative step of starting MBBS Course in Hindi as of the 2022-2023 academic session, experts in the medical field have expressed reservations about the move due to the unavailability of quality works in the language on the subject.

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan recently announced that starting from the new academic session, Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) course will be taught in Hindi at Gandhi Medical College (GMC), Bhopal to students from first year.

Currently, medical education is provided only in English.

In addition, Chouhan also announced that BTech degree and polytechnic degree courses, in six colleges each, will be taught in Hindi language under the National Education Policy (NEP) from July 2022.

The state’s medical education minister, Vishvas Sarang, driving the move, said Madhya Pradesh was the first state in the country to take the initiative to teach MBBS in Hindi.

“We are starting the MBBS course in Hindi for the first time in the country. No other state offers medical education in the mother tongue… Madhya Pradesh is the first to do so,” he told PTI.

Sarang said textbooks especially in physiology, anatomy and biochemistry are being prepared in Hindi for students and will be available soon.

However, experts in the medical fraternity remain skeptical of the ‘MBBS in Hindi’ decision.

Former Indore-based Vice Chancellor of Devi Ahilyabai Vishwa Vidyalaya (DAVV) and a senior pediatrician Dr Bharat Chhaperwal said: “I am not against imparting medical education in Hindi but textbooks of quality with up-to-date advancements in the field are available to students. ?”

Research articles published in quality medical journals like Lancet, British Medical Journal and New England Medical Journal, among others, take at least three to four years to find a place in textbooks, he said. he declares.

Chhaperwal said he was not against Hindi but as a medical professional he feels there was not enough preparation before announcing the decision.

“Governments should leave this matter to professionals instead of deciding in which language medicine and surgery should be taught,” he said.

When it was pointed out to him that in many countries like Japan, Russia, China and France, medical education is conducted in the mother tongue, Chhaperwal said that in these countries, a sufficient number of medical textbooks quality are available in their mother tongue, which was not the case in India.

The government has set up a Hindi university in the state and tasked it with preparing MBBS textbooks in the widely spoken language, but this will not benefit the students as such, especially the tribals, he said. .

“If the government really wanted to transform the lives of tribals, it should start giving them quality education from the start,” the former vice-chancellor remarked.

A senior doctor based in Bhopal, Pushpendra Sharma, who did his MBBS and an equivalent course in MS surgery from Odessa State Medical University in Ukraine, said a lot of effort will be needed to make the move successful .

“It is not such a simple task to start teaching MBBS in Hindi. Moving requires a lot of preparation as medical terminologies need to be translated into Hindi first. It is a tough call,” he said points out.

Asked how some other countries manage to provide medical education in their mother tongue, Sharma said they have been doing it for ages and hence have developed rich course content for students.

A former director of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), speaking on condition of anonymity, called the decision “unfortunate” but did not give details.

However, top BJP leader and medical practitioner Dr. Hitesh Bajpai supported the move.

“We are committed to providing technical education in the students’ mother tongue. No one should be left behind because of a language,” he said.

Minister Sarang said textbooks for three subjects to be taught in the first year are being prepared by a team of experts.

“The books are prepared in such a way that technical terms such as blood pressure, spine, heart, kidney, liver or other important body parts and related terms are written in Hindi,” said said Sarang.

“We are preparing textbooks so that those studying MBBS in Hindi will not be late after the course is over as they will learn all the technical and medical terms in English as well as Hindi,” he said. he adds.

Sarang said that in the first year, only three subjects – physiology, anatomy and biochemistry – are mainly taught to students.

“Our preparations are underway to make the textbooks available in Hindi for the students before the course starts,” the minister said.

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