Medical Grads Twice As Many As Trained Housemen

Slots are limited due to failure of medical officers to finish training in two years.

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 9 — Only about 3,000 housemen finish their training each year, but there are 5,000 to 6,000 medical graduates each year, said Health Minister Dzulkefly Ahmad.

Dzulkefly said this while answering a question from Wilfred Madius Tangau, Member of Parliament for Tuaran, on the prolonged waiting time for medical graduates to be placed for duty.

“The number of medical graduates is increasing compared to the number of training slots provided at the Ministry of Health (MOH) facilities,” he said.

“Graduate training slots at graduate training hospitals are currently only at 12,033; and all of those places have been filled by house officers.

“These slots are cleared only when the house officers finish their training,” he added.

However, according to MOH’s record, 32.9 percent of housemen failed to complete training within the assigned two years. These trainee doctors take longer to finish their training due to personal factors and competencies.

“This causes the training slots to be held by these officers, hindering slots for new medical graduates. So, for now, only about 3,091 housemen complete training every year whereas the total number of medical and domestic graduates are estimated at 5,000 to 6,000 a year,” he explained.

“MOH is currently adopting an optimisation approach manpower to enable service delivery continued at the health facility.

“As a step to overcome due to lack of employment, MOH has also applied allocation and employment to central agencies in particular for addressing the needs of new and upgraded facilities.”

Earlier this month, MOH announced a new measure where medical officers will be placed in whichever government facility with a need and vacancy for their desired practice immediately after completing their housemanship. Permanent appointments would be made later during their service.

These medical officers would be immediately confirmed at the UD44 grade, up from UD41 as contract housemen, and enjoy the benefits of that permanent position without having to wait for another three years.

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