Young Doctors must work in rural areas before getting their first promotion: Vice President

The Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu has told authorities to make it mandatory to young Doctors to work in rural areas at least for two to three years before they get their first promotion. He was addressing the 11th International Dental Students & 5th Dental Surgeons Conference, jointly organized by Dental Students Welfare Association and Dental Surgeons Conference, here today. Dental students and dental surgeons from different parts of India and abroad have participated in this conference.

The Vice President said that the most common oral diseases are dental cavities, periodontal (gum) disease, oral cancer, oral infectious diseases, trauma from injuries, and hereditary lesions. Proper awareness and setting up of health camps will be a solution address this problem, he added.

The Vice President wanted the healthcare professionals to conduct dental camps in the rural areas which were neglected over the years. He appreciated the participants who have taken oath to work for 15 days in a year in rural areas for free. That is a good idea and I am sure that the initiative will help the needy, he said. Medical professionals should work for life-style changes of people, he added.

The Vice President said that while the government is keen to set up more colleges in the public sector, strict action should be taken by the Dental Council against the private dental colleges which are not maintaining proper standards and falling short of stipulations. We cannot afford any kind of laxity when it comes to health education and healthcare of the people, he said. I am told that only 40 of the 300 odd dental colleges in the country are in the government sector, he added.

The Vice President said that today the digital technology is revolutionizing every aspect of our life. He further said that while using the latest technology, you should ensure that the treatment and implants are within the affordable range of the common man. We need to encourage people to maintain proper oral hygiene and visit dentists periodically to ensure a healthy society, he added.

Following is the text of Vice President’s address:

“I welcome all the dental students and dental surgeons from different parts of India and abroad to this 11th International Dental Students & 5th Dental Surgeons Conference.

I am told that the Dental Students Welfare Association and Dental Surgeons Conference have been organizing this conference in different parts of the country every year not only for an exchange of knowledge.

I am happy to learn that they are also running an international exchange programme and an international research programme with the help of dental teachers of different countries to give chance to Indian students to learn beyond the boundaries. I would like to congratulate them for their efforts in this regard. 

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), oral health is essential to general health and quality of life. It is a state of being free from mouth and facial pain, oral and throat cancer, oral infection and sores, periodontal (gum) disease, tooth decay, tooth loss, and other diseases and disorders that limit an individual’s capacity in biting, chewing, smiling, speaking, and psychosocial wellbeing.

The most common oral diseases are dental cavities, periodontal (gum) disease, oral cancer, oral infectious diseases, trauma from injuries, and hereditary lesions.

Risk factors for oral diseases include an unhealthy diet, tobacco use and harmful alcohol use. These are also risk factors for the four leading chronic diseases – cardiovascular diseases, cancer, chronic respiratory diseases and diabetes – and oral diseases are often linked to chronic disease. Poor oral hygiene is also a risk factor for oral disease.

With dental diseases increasing day-by-day, I appeal to all the dental students and surgeons to launch regular campaigns to create awareness amongst the people, particularly in the rural areas, which are in general facing shortage of medical professionals, including dentists.

I would like you to conduct dental camps in the rural areas. I am happy to know that the participants have taken oath to work for 15 days in a year in rural areas for free. That is a good idea and I am sure that the initiative will help the needy.

The dentists’ fraternity also has a great responsibility to step up the fight against oral cancer which is among the leading cancers in the country.

Apart from launching a massive campaign against the risk factors like tobacco and alcohol use and highlighting the need for the people to lead healthy lifestyles, your members can play a vital role in early detection of oral cancers. Unfortunately, in vast majority of cases, the disease is diagnosed in an advanced stage and this needs to be prevented. The Government has taken many initiatives to fight oral cancer and you need to supplement them.

I am told that 30,000 graduates pass every year from different dental colleges in the country and more than 6000 post graduates get their MDS degree from dental colleges – the number is increasing every year because of the mushrooming of dental colleges.

While the government is keen to set up more colleges in the public sector, strict action should be taken by the Dental Council against the private dental colleges which are not maintaining proper standards and falling short of stipulations. We cannot afford any kind of laxity when it comes to health education and healthcare of the people. I am told that only 40 of the 300 odd dental colleges in the country are in the government sector.

I think the government should also consider using the services of dentists and dental surgeons in PHCs and CHCs in order to promote oral hygiene and in the fight against oral cancer. The national oral health policy must aim not only at promoting oral hygiene but also generate employment for dentists as the dentist-patient ratio at present is around 1:8,000.

Dear students, today the digital technology is revolutionizing every aspect of our life. While using the latest technology, you should ensure that the treatment and implants are within the affordable range of the common man.

We need to encourage people to maintain proper oral hygiene and visit dentists periodically to ensure a healthy society.

My best wishes to all the participants at this conference.

JAI HIND!

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AKT/BK/RK

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