Unemployed Doctors

In recent years, medical colleges have grown significantly in Pakistan. As of 2019, there were nearly 114 medical colleges — both in public and private sectors. This means that there are approximately 16,000 medicine graduates per year. This then raises several questions: where do these annual 16,000 doctors go? Do they find employment in public organisations or private ones? Are they making full use of their skills and returning to the country through their services? It is difficult to draw a definite conclusion, but most of the graduates are unemployed and struggle with finding employment in the healthcare sector.
At present, Pakistan is faced with a shortage of doctors because many move abroad due to the absence of employment opportunities. We produce more doctors than jobs available but still suffer from a shortage, thus creating a vicious cycle. It is disheartening for people to end up unemployed after putting years of hard work into their study of medicine. One of the main reasons is that resources are not fully maneuvered. To see actual changes, coherent policies should be designed to address the challenges. An increasing number of private medical colleges are another reason for disturbing the doctors to jobs ratio. Private colleges have turned the profession into a business by producing a disproportionate number of doctors each year.
The central induction policy by the Punjab residency program is another frustrating system to cover up the shortage of vacancies because it makes one think that they are at fault themselves. The doctors do not need any appreciation, special treatment, or false hopes. We need employment so that our years of effort and education do not go in vain.
Dr Aimen Sohail

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