It’s been 7 years now since I started to blog. Over the last 7 years, I had at countless number of times explained in detail about degree recognition, license to practise, job opportunities, quality, apparent “license to kill” and changing landscape of medical practise. Unfortunately, our society especially students and parents are still living in an ignorant world.
Today, there was an interesting letter to theStar(attached below). As usual, it has to come from a parent , similar to what I wrote in my blog post dated 10/06/2016. We have too many naive parents out there who refuse to listen to advise but will complain when it happens. The letter that was written clearly shows that he is not aware how the field of dentistry works, similar to medicine. You must understand that Dentistry had 3 years compulsory service since 2001 till 2012, after which it was reduced to 2 years. In June 2015, the compulsory service was reduced to 1 year which means that ONLY internship is done in government service for the purpose of full registration. I wrote about this in March 2016. The reason for this reduction is due to shortage of post in civil service.
The ignorance of the writer is clearly visible on this letter. Firstly, you don’t become a “dental surgeon” after graduating. The term itself is wrongly used. The one year compulsory service is ACTUALLY Internship. Without internship, you will not be able to be fully registered. Without full registration, you WILL NOT be able to practise as a dentist. I am not sure what “world-wide standards” is he talking about BUT there is NO such thing as practising without completing internship. Without internship, which is a supervised training period , you are NOT eligible to practise medicine/Dentistry. Graduating as a doctor/dentist DOES NOT give you a license to practise. License to practise is totally a different issue than having a degree. Unfortunately, at the moment, internship can only be done at government sector. Anyone caught practising dentistry or medicine with temporary registration or without any registration can be regarded as bogus doctors! Parents should also understand that spending huge amount of money does not guarantee you a job. I had always said that taking huge amount of loans to do medicine/dentistry does not make any economic sense. NO private or public colleges can guarantee you a job.
On another note, our Minister had said that medical graduates can do some other jobs while waiting for housemanship posting. The waiting period currently stands at 8 months. As I said in my blog post last month, i know a graduate who is working as a pharmaceutical rep while waiting for housemanship. The situation will only get worst from this year onwards. AND I still get emails from students who are intending to do medicine in an unrecognised university! Sometimes, I feel I should just give up trying to educate the public! MMC has introduced a new fee structure for MQE examination. I did write last year that MMC had increased the registration fee to RM 1000 with maximum of 4 attempts. This year they had introduced a common theory paper for a fee of RM 3000. Yes, this will be the way forward. MMC should conduct the MQE exams themselves rather than allocating to various universities where the exam standards vary. I hope eventually, the clinical component will also be standardised. Will this lead to a Common entry exam for all foreign graduates? I understand that MMC is gradually reducing the number of recognised universities overseas.
A blog reader sent me a message in my Facebook today asking me to update my blog more regularly. Yes, I have been busy for the last 3 months with all these tax issues against doctors and would continue to be busy for another 2 months till all the issues are settled. Till then, I may be slow in updating my blog post unless something “hot” appears. Anyway , all information needed by students are available in this blog OR they could just buy my book and read.
The world of medicine is changing. Doctors are getting sued almost daily basis. Complains to MMC is increasing by leaps and bounds. It is shocking to see the latest disciplinary actions taken by MMC which is available at their website. The numbers keep increasing. A lot of black sheep are appearing in our noble profession as I mentioned in my last blog post. A new medical indemnity scheme has been introduced this year. Interestingly, since the new scheme started, in just 7 months, they have 4 cases filed in court for medical negligence! That shows how the society is changing. I have almost daily complains in my hospital for various issues. At the end, everything boils down to money!
Think before you decide on the life that you want………………
Abolish compulsory government service
MY son graduated as a dental surgeon from a local private university on December 2015 after five years of intensive study and spending a few hundred thousand dollars. Sadly, he is still waiting to be called for an interview for the one-year compulsory government service and is not gainfully employed.
I understand from reading the newspapers that there are not enough vacancies for dental surgeons in government hospitals. In this situation, I certainly do not understand why the one-year compulsory government service is still not abolished. Can the Health Ministry or Malaysia Dental Council (MDC) offer some sensible and more logical explanation? I am sure others who are in the same boat as my son, and their parents too, will appreciate being enlightened on this.
This waiting period is a trying and demoralising time for my son who is eager to serve the people in this beautiful country.
And while he is waiting, he is wasting his life away and suffering financial loss too.
Why can’t the MDC issue a temporary annual practising certificate to newly-graduated dental surgeons to allow them to work in a private clinic until the Government is ready to take them? After all, they are fully qualified to practise in accordance with worldwide standards.
My son borrowed RM100,000 from PTPTN to finance his course. If he is gainfully employed now, he can start to repay the loan.
I look forward to an immediate solution from the intelligent and efficient officials at the Health Ministry and MDC.