- Online Gurukul

A pragmatic approach to Doctor’s salary in India

Money has remained a taboo topic to be discussed among doctor circles, not just in India but elsewhere all the same- you get paid what you get paid and that’s about it.
Walk into a fresher’s classroom in a med school and ask the students why they want to become doctors.There will be a plethora of reasons given, a good salary probably won’t be one of them.
That’s how big of a taboo it is.
It’s high time that the health-care workers and the society realise the fact that just like everyone else, doctor’s too require money for their day to day expenses, savings and leisure activities & that there’s nothing inherently wrong with that.
Coming to the topic at hand, what can a fresh-out-of-the-college doctor expect in terms of earnings when he/she steps into the field of clinical medicine ?
Well, the answer is not so simple.
India as a country, even 75 years after it’s independence is still going through a lot of refinement and changes – both good and bad and that changes the scenario from place to place.
While the Southern states of India boast about the number of colleges they’re running of higher education including medicine an often overlooked fact is the repercussion it has.
With the example of Karnataka – the state admits over 9,000 candidates into it’s MBBS courses every year!
The result being a mismatch between supply and demand, creating a scenario where fresh out of MBBS doctors have to work at salaries at INR 20,000/month.
The same applies to most colleges in the Southern states of India where the number of colleges are way too many. Tamil Nadu is to be noted in this regard.
On the other side we have the Northern and North-Eastern states where the penetration of higher education specially Medical sciences has been low.
The result is a reciprocal of what we have in the South – less doctors being churned out when compared to the south.
The same rule of economics of supply and demand comes into play and a fresh out of college MBBS graduate can expect a salary of anywhere between INR 60,000 (In-hand) to INR 1,20,000/month depending upon where you work and at what capacity.
Things begin to even out a little once you enter a  Post-graduate degree but there is still a stark contrast between the stipend being given to the MS/MD students in North and North-east versus the South.
Where a doctor pursuing his/her MS/MD in the south can expect no more than INR 30,000-40,000/month the same degree in the counterparts of the country fetch anywhere between INR 60,000 all the way upto INR 1,00,000/month depending upon the state & the college they’re studying from.
With the current union government being assertive about superceding the WHO recommendations of Doctors to Patients ratio of 1:1000 perhaps to pat their back, the scenario gets further grim for aspirants planning on joining the medical field.

Then there are the woes of the doctors in private colleges in both graduate and postgraduate programmes either being paid less stipened or being denied the same outright.
There’s no second thought that there is an urgent demand for intervention and corrective measures to be taken by those in power to ensure that a life-saver don’t have to go to extreme ends like working double shifts just to survive.
After spending anywhere between 12 to 15 years of their lives studying a person deserves a chance at decent earning.

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The founders of PracBee are senior IITians, passionate about education in India and ensuring high performance of students.

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