Dar chairs first meeting of Committee on Medical Education

ISLAMABAD   -   The first meeting of the ‘Committee on Medical Education’ was held here on Friday under the chairmanship of Deputy Prime Minister Mohammad Ishaq Dar.

The meeting was attended by the Minister for Law and Justice, the Coordinator to the Prime Minister on Health, Secretary Health, the Deputy Chairman Planning Commission and Chairman Higher Education Commission, MNA Dr Nafeesa Shah, heads of prominent public and private medical institutions and eminent experts from the medical community.

The committee was constituted by the Prime Minister on 20 May 2024 with the Deputy Prime Minister as the convener. Members include key stakeholders from the medical community, the education sector, and government officials. It aims to reform medical education across the country. This initiative underscores the government’s commitment to improve healthcare standards and ensure the highest quality of medical training for future generations of healthcare professionals.

In its first meeting, the Deputy Prime Minister emphasised the important responsibility of the committee to address the gaps in medical education in the country. He highlighted the importance of nurturing a conducive environment for medical students to excel and contribute meaningfully to the healthcare sector. Deputy Prime Minister Dar stressed the importance of ensuring world-class quality of medical education across all provinces. He also underlined the need to improve the regulatory framework for medical education in Pakistan and to establish a coordination mechanism between medical institutions and the public and private sector to ensure uniform high-quality education.

The committee conducted a comprehensive review of the medical education system in Pakistan including fee structures and identified key areas for improvement and development of a strategic plan to align medical education with international standards. The committee specifically focused on devising a plan to solve the issues faced by Pakistani medical students studying abroad. It also discussed strategies to support and empower medical students in their academic and professional endeavours.

After a detailed discussion, a sub-executive committee was constituted with Dr Malik Mukhtar Ahmad, National Coordinator for Health as Convener and Tariq Bajwa as co-convener. The sub-committee will deliberate on the existing TORs along with additional tasks including synergies among regulatory bodies, streamlining procedures for foreign students in Pakistan and the uniformity in curricula. The committee will prepare its report with the objective to ensure that medical graduates in Pakistan are equipped with the knowledge and skills required to meet contemporary healthcare challenges and to provide the highest level of care to all Pakistani nationals.

This initiative is part of the government’s continuing efforts to elevate the standards of healthcare services in Pakistan and to prepare medical professionals to effectively serve in both domestic and global healthcare.

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