Thursday, October 13, 2011

Specific Proposals for AYUSH Education in the 12th Plan

1. Training of Trainers (ToT) for AYUSH Faculty

2. Training for Principals of AYUSH Institutions in Educational Management

3. Training of AYUSH Hospital Superintendents in Clinical Leadership

i. What is the context of proposed programs/schemes? (Mention gaps, magnitude of the problem, issues that need to be focused upon, challenges, potential solutions and their limitations related to programs/schemes)

Training of Trainers (ToT) for AYUSH Faculty

Teachers of AYUSH Sector are selected from a pool of postgraduates in the relevant discipline. This ensures that the selected teachers have some degree of authority in their subject speciality. This procedure, however doesn’t guarantee that those who are selected have proficiency in teaching; because educational techniques are not a customary component of postgraduate syllabus in any of the AYUSH sector. Therefore, these ‘teachers’ may not be sensitised to the various basic norms of teaching and student evaluation.

To rectify this gap, it is necessary to institutionalise the process of training teachers in the field of Educational Science and Technology. This can be achieved by dedicating a certain percentage of syllabus in postgraduate education for imparting knowledge and skills of teaching and evaluation. For those teachers who are already in service, there has to be a program of training in the relevant skills that are benchmarked as necessary for proficiency in teaching and evaluation of higher education.

This proposal is in tune with the experience of medical education in India. In the 1970s, the Government of India initiated an ambitious project to impart the principles of higher education to the medical teachers and align their practices to be compatible to the global standards of medical teaching. As part of this initiative, Centres for Medical Education were established. The National Teachers Training Centre at JIPMER, Puduchery and K. L. Wig Centre for Medical Education at AIIMS, New Delhi are examples of this organisation building.

Much of the reforms in medical curriculum in India emerged as a result of this ingenuity. The faculty who were the beneficiaries of this project are in the forefront of the educational reforms that are driving the Indian medical professionals as major players in the global healthcare delivery.

AYUSH education is passing through a phase, from which it has to emerge stronger and firmer in the mainstream of both national and global healthcare management. Therefore, a project that takes care of Training of Trainers for AYUSH Faculty is necessary and justified.

Training for Principals of AYUSH Institutions in Educational Management

The pace of educational change has been accelerating in the past few years. The forces of economic liberalisation and social awareness have coupled and aligned to create consumer consciousness for rights in the field of health and education services. This wave of consumer rights has heightened the demand for strong links between education and perceived needs of healthcare services of the community. Medical institutions are increasingly required to deliver students prepared to contribute to the healthcare of the society.

The documents of National Policy on Education, National Policy on Medical Education and National Policy on ISM & H, among others represent a trend towards quality in education and institutional responsibility that are hypothecated on the assumption that decisions should be made by those who best understand the needs of the students and the society. The outcomes of such initiatives include Internal Quality Assurance Cells in various universities and the constituting of National Assessment and Accreditation Council under the aegis of University Grants Commission.

AYUSH institutions serve a multidimensional role of providing educational activities and experiences for the students, healthcare services to the patients and research and development potential for the doctor and teachers. Thus, the responsibilities imposed on Principal or the academic leader of AYUSH institution place a premium on high quality management. Management of patient care or financial planning require skills that are distinct from those needed to plan and deliver the curriculum. Principals of AYUSH colleges have qualifications in AYUSH with little or no formal qualification in management discipline. They usually grow into the job over the years and some do remarkably well, while others falter along the way. The situation can be remedied to a large extent if the educational leaders are provided with awareness of theoretical concepts and their practical application in a systematic manner.

Training is a vital component in the acquisition of managerial competence as is a clear understanding of how to ensure successful implementation of change. Thus, there is a need to enhance the capacity of principals as good administrators / managers as well as instructional leaders, so that the future generations of AYUSH practitioners are imbued with confidence and competence to be torch bearers of AYUSH practice. This could be achieved by instituting a program for training principals in the principles and practice of education management.

Training of AYUSH Hospital Superintendents in Clinical Leadership

The global healthcare market is now appreciating the contemporary relevance of AYUSH. Health seeking behaviour studies suggest that a new regime of ‘Medical Pluralism’ based on inputs provided by various health care systems of the world, will govern healthcare delivery systems in modern societies.

Given the shift in consumer trends, towards pluralism and growing acceptance of AYUSH, opportunities in mainstream healthcare market for AYUSH systems are expanding. They include preventive, curative and wellness services. This new regime is creating demand for highly skilled AYUSH clinician leaders who can rub shoulders with specialists of conventional medicine in both corporate and community healthcare situations. The superintendents of the hospitals that are attached to the AYUSH institutions need to be aware of the principles that drive effective hospital management in the areas of clinical training for the students and healthcare services for the patients. Therefore, an organised program for capacity building the managerial and leadership abilities of these human resources managers is justified.


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