Bond scam only blot on this govt


Dr Rajitha

By Dilanthi Jayamanne

Health Minister Dr Rajitha Senaratne yesterday said there were increasing foreign employment opportunities in the health sector.

Dr. Senaratne said however that the government’s main aim was to overcome the shortage of doctors in the country. As a first step it hoped to produce at least 800 MBBS qualified doctors through state-run medical faculties. Steps had been taken to increase the intake of medical students to the state Medical Faculty affiliated to the Karapitiya Teaching Hospital to 300, while the Kuliyapitiya Base Hospital was to be upgraded to a Teaching Hospital for the proposed medical faculty of Wayamba University. The Ratnapura Hospital would be upgraded to teach students of the Sabaragamuwa Medical Faculty affiliated to Sabaragamuwa University and a Medical Faculty would be set up at the Moratuwa University as well.

There were, however, allegations that the government was attempting to privatise medical education thought steps were being taken to strengthen the medical service through the state run medical faculties proved otherwise, the Minister observed.

He said the Health Ministry had also taken steps to double the number of specialist doctors. Subsequently Sri Lanka would be able to provide medical professionals for the foreign job market.

Dr Senaratne said the government had endeavoured to establish good governance within Sri Lanka and to enable Sri Lankans to benefit from its free health service. The present government had been able to provide a well organised free health service to the public. He said that although the public had gleaned a majority of health benefits from the government it had voted for the SLPP at last month’s local government elections.

The former government was a "factory of corruption." The bond scams were the only allegation against the present government, he maintained.

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