The significant development comes after the report of the Medical Assessment and Rating Board (MARB) was submitted regarding the faculty, their experience, publication, and other infrastructure facilities available at GMC here.
As per an official document, the admission for new seats would start from the academic year 2022-23.
“It is to inform that Medical Assessment and Rating Board has reviewed the assessor’s report on July 16 regarding the faculty, their experience, publication, and other teaching facilities including infrastructure available at GMC Srinagar under the University of Kashmir, for an increase of seats in MD (Psychiatry) for the academic year 2022-23,” said Member and President, MARB, National Medical Commission.
The NMC has asked the GMC to provide all infrastructure facilities in terms of teaching and non-teaching staff, buildings, equipment, and hospital facilities as per the NMC norms.
“No student should be admitted to the course till the formal permission of MARB,” the document reads.
The NMC in its letter of intent has said that the medical colleges and institutions governed by the state government are required to furnish only an undertaking signed by the government authority to provide funds in their budget till the facilities are fully provided a per time bound programme indicated by them.
“The private medical college should provide a bank guarantee of the required amount against the increase of four seats in favour of NMC, New Delhi valid for three years or till the course is recognised, whichever is later, from a nationalized and scheduled bank as per the NMC and MCI’s norms,” the letter reads.
The NMC in its letter said that the medical colleges or institutions would provide an undertaking to implement the decision regarding the payment of stipends to the PG students similar to PG students of GMCs in their state.
“The MARB reserves the right to withdraw, cancel, revoke the letter of intent or letter of permission if it comes to the notice that the permission has been obtained from MARB by misrepresentation of fact or fraud,” the letter reads, adding that it should be incumbent upon the medical college that the information relating to admission should be submitted within the time specified in the circular in this regard issued by this office from time to time.
“Any failure to submit the information within this time limit would be construed that the admission in the college was not following the statutory requirements, thereby enabling the commission to proceed following the law against the college. Action to grant formal permission of the MARB for an increase in intake of the said course at your college will be initiated on receipt of appropriate bank guarantee, if applicable and undertaking or compliance letter fulfilling the conditions,” the letter reads.
NMC has asked the GMC to send an acceptance letter within a week.
“You may otherwise opt to follow section 28 (3) (5) (6) of NMC Act, 2019 to enable MARB to issue a letter of permission for the academic year 2022-23,” the NMC said.
The PG Department of Psychiatry at GMC Srinagar runs a full-fledged hospital for psychiatry care at the Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Kashmir at Badamwari, Rainawari.
A 30-bedded hospital of Community General Hospital Unit inside the premises of SMHS Hospital is available with more than 80 mental health professionals.
The Department of Psychiatry is the only tertiary care referral hospital in Kashmir for mental health and caters to the majority of the population of Kashmir, Ladakh, and adjoining areas of Jammu.
It was upgraded to Centre of Excellence under NMHP Scheme A and is considered one of the best psychiatry facilities in the country due to its contributions to research, manpower production, and service to mental health as has been acknowledged by the Supreme Court-monitored committee and NHRC in their various reports.
The department provides both in-patient (with and without attendant) and out-patient care to persons suffering from mental health problems including substance use disorders (24×7).
The other facilities available at the hospital are a free drug dispensary, free food and clothes for admitted patients, proper heating and cooling arrangements in the hospital, diagnostic biochemical laboratory, Electroencephalography Laboratory, three Tesla MRI units, computerised medical record section, WiFi, and AC-equipped library, modern modified brain stimulation unit, and OST unit for opioid dependence.
The department is MCI recognised research institute and provides a postgraduate course in Psychiatry with an annual intake capacity of 8 MD students which has now been increased to 12 and 8 M Phil Clinical Psychology students recognised by RCI.
The department also provides two weeks of clinical posting for MBBS internship students, psychology students of Amity and other universities, students of IGNOU and the University of Kashmir, clinical and theory classes for B Sc Nursing, M Sc Nursing (Psychiatry) students, M A Psychology, M A Sociology students from various institutions including SKIMS and the University of Kashmir.
The department provides the best learning and teaching atmosphere for the students with exposure to areas of child psychiatry, de-addiction, consultation-liaison psychiatry, long-term psychiatric care, general hospital psychiatry besides acute care in mental health.
There are very few institutions in the country that have such a wide range of facilities in mental health that help in making the best clinicians in psychiatry.