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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 233-234

In response to article by Dayanand et al.

Department of Radiotherapy, Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi, India

Date of Web Publication12-Jul-2011

Correspondence Address:
Manoj Sharma
502, Kanchanjungha apartments, Kaushambi, Ghaziabad-201010, U.P. Department of Radiotherapy, Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi 110 002
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0973-1482.82941

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How to cite this article:
Sharma M. In response to article by Dayanand et al.. J Can Res Ther 2011;7:233-4

How to cite this URL:
Sharma M. In response to article by Dayanand et al.. J Can Res Ther [serial online] 2011 [cited 2022 May 26];7:233-4. Available from: https://www.cancerjournal.net/text.asp?2011/7/2/233/82941


Dr. Sharma has touched a very sensitive issue that relates to the future making of oncologists in our country. However, I think the article of Dr. Dayanand Sharma et al. should be seen with little skepticism.

This is not true that the student are not interested in radiotherapy, one can see their performance once they are selected in the PG course.

As such there are many other reasons for disinterest and yet there are many other subjects for which students have the same type of apathy and many of them complete their post graduation with total apathy even though awarded to them due to their merit status. I wonder if this part, that deals with questioning for other subjects too, has been covered by the author in his questionnaire or not.

In renowned radiotherapy centers the students do take radiotherapy as a first choice and some of them do pretty well. That is the different story if the departments of radiotherapy suffer from the chronic problem of defective leadership or head ship in form of procurement of basic minimal infrastructure as per MCI guidelines or frequent shut downs either due to flaunting of AERB rules or the noncompliance of the AERB directives or inability to procure medical physicist or in the rare case when the HOD himself does not want to expand the department despite corers of rupees grant offered by the institution because he can enjoy his Director professor status without treating or teaching.

In some cases it has been seen that the students join radiotherapy but quit the department because of the on goings within the department such as dirty politics, unavailability of state of art set up even bare minimal set up or scientific temper and habitual plagiarism amongthe faculty. There is evidence when the student has left the subject to much less lucrative subject or even to a government job without completing the post graduation. Who is to be blame student or subject of the faculty?

I think Dr. Dayanand et al.'s article should have gone more into the introspection part of it as to why is it so. Is it the own doing of those who are at the helm of affairs in radiotherapy and those who lacked foresightedness in terms of creating more medical physic post-graduation courses in their state of art equipped departments in "centers of excellence" situated in capitals of states and of India so that at least the departments are not shut down due to absence of medical physicist or RSO, or the MD degrees are not derecognized or in some case the post-graduation seats are not deleted by the university because the department and its faculty was not up to the mark. Some four-year ago one could count up to 17 for closed radiotherapy departments for want of medical physicists.

The other reason being that the best students not getting the seats of their choice due to certain policies and in the end radiotherapy offered to them (a subject of low priority to any above 80% scorer while even for 50% scorer takes away his seat of choice) and this is when they decide to fight the election next time -- reappear for another entrance. This is the stark truth of time and we must accept it if we have to maintain the sanctity of the health care standards in India. Reservation should not be denied at any cost but to maintain the standards of medical care the reservation cut off marks should be kept at bare 10% lower than the nonreserved cut off marks. This will serve the purpose to both, meritorious deserving and meritorious reserved candidate.

The other aspect that Dr. Dayananad Sharma has missed is the teaching of oncological sciences during the undergraduate course. It is not radiotherapy alone which is important to be taught to attract the students instead it is the teaching of oncological sciences in all its comprehensiveness on the models of Adyar's post-doctoral and MD post graduate courses.

 > Attempts to Introduce the Subject of Oncological Sciences at the Undergraduate Level Through the Indian Society Of Oncology Top

Right at the time of the revision of MBBS syllabus a couple of year back, a sincere attempt was made by me through Indian Society of Oncology. And there too the whole project failed by our own people as the syllabus was handed over to those who either had little back ground in the understanding of comprehensive approach and were surgically committed or chemotherapeutically biased or they had no time from their clinical practice to attend to this important assignment given to them.

This is of utmost importance to prevent the everyday calamity of failure rates even for the curable cancer cases. Is it not a shame that the articles have started appearing in journals related to oncological sciences such as Surgeons being the cause of treatment failure in cancer? Well indeed such evidences are seen every day and there is no need for going to confirm the references of such article.

It is high time that the radiation oncologist himself introspects and makes the subject more lucrative, the teachers start teaching whether in MCI recognized institutions of National Board Accredited institution

 > The Post-Graduate Teaching in MD and DNB, Infrastructure Versus faculty Time of the Private Institutions Top

The serious issue that has been revealed during the appraiser ship for the post-graduate degrees in some institutions was that there was excellent infrastructure to teach radiation and oncological sciences when compared to myriad teaching radiotherapy departments in medical colleges but the so-called faculty, the consultants could not shell out time much away from their brisk practice of a five star/corporate sector hospitals.

The problem of futuristic scenario of radiotherapy and quality training has to be seen in its totality.


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