AIIMS RDA against revision of tuition fees and user charges in medical institutes

New Delhi [India], Nov 23 (ANI): The Resident Doctors Association (RDA) of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) stands against the memorandum issued by the institute's administration to review and examine the tuition fees of students and also to fix inform user charges for patients in all medical institute.

On Friday, ANI had reported the story over the memorandum which was issued on November 20 by the AIIMS authorities after getting directions from the Union Health Ministry to rationalise and review tuition fees and fix uniform user charges of all six AIIMS, including AIIMS- Delhi.

Dr Amarinder Singh Malhi, President of RDA at AIIMS told ANI, "Quality education and healthcare are building blocks of our nation and we will not allow any person, organization, government to compromise on them in any aspect. We, Resident Doctors at AIIMS are against the memorandum which has been issued by the administration to examine the tuition fees of students and also to fix inform user charges for patients in all medical institutes. We will not accept this even if it happens at any of the six AIIMS, including AIIMS- Delhi. We stand against it."

"We request all the policymakers to think logically and take concrete steps in this directions so that our nation can fare far better than where it stands at present in global healthcare access and quality (HAQ) index as well as global quality education Index (EI)," said Dr Malhi.

A senior official from AIIMS, on the condition of anonymity, told ANI, "There are multiple factors for the revision of tuition fees and user charges. It has been more than 25 years that users charges have not been revised at all and in these years there has been a lot of advancement in medical treatment like advanced diagnostic tests, equipment, machines etc which are very expensive. As far as tuition fees are considered, it has not been revised for over 50 years or so."

"In view of the above all centres, departments, sections and facilities are requested to submit the details of charges in the following format," the memorandum by the AIIMS authorities read.

"User charges is an important component of non-tax revenues. Each ministry/ department may undertake an exercise, to identify the user charges levied by it and published the same of the website, read the memorandum. While fixing the rates of user charges, the ministry and department must ensure that the user charges recover the current cost of providing services with a reasonable return on capital investment," it added.

According to the memorandum, any deviation from these principles shall be specifically recorded with reasons justifying the setting of user charges lower than the cost recovery norms, if any.

The rates of user charges should be linked with appropriate price indices and record at least every three years. In order to enable ease of revision of user charges, the rate of user charges shall be fixed, wherever, possible through rules or executive orders and not through a statue, stated the memorandum. (ANI)