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All India Institute of Medical Sciences

All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) (created 1956) is a medical college and hospital in India, and is an autonomous institution funded by India's Union Government. It is located in New Delhi.

It is considered as the best medical college and public hospital in the country and is globally recognised for providing low-cost medical care to a large number of patients. Most of India's VIPs (Legislators, Ministers, Judges in particular) utilize AIIMS as their primary hospital, which contributes to ensuring the maintenance of high standards. Recently, medical professionals from various Asian, European and American countries have begun coming to AIIMS to train, as the exposure to various diseases attained there is rare in most other institutions. .

It is one of India's Institutes of National Importance, a distinguished category of premier institutions like the IITs, IIMs, NITs, Indian Statistical Institute, ICAR etc.

Location

AIIMS is located in Ansari Nagar, an upscale locality of South Delhi. It is adjacent to the South Extension market, and lies on the Outer Ring Road. The region is referred to commonly as "medical", as a number of healthcare-related organizations are headquartered there. The AIIMS Flyover is a large complex of flyovers and overpasses that lies on the Ring Road in front of AIIMS. The AIIMS Metro Station, which is presently under construction, will be part of the New Delhi Metro Rail System.

Across the road from AIIMS is Safdargunj hospital, a large facility which caters to Delhi's population (as opposed to AIIMS which is a referral centre).

Adjacent to AIIMS lies the headquarters of ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research), the body that coordinates and funds medical research in India.

Beyond that is the National Medical Library, run by the DGHS (Directorate-General of Health Services) of the Government of India. It has a vast collection of scientific and medical journals that can be accessed by researchers.

Farthest along the stretch is the NAMS house, the official building of the National Academy of Medical Sciences, which is a prestigious body of eminent doctors from across India.

History

AIIMS was inaugurated in 1956, and was built with a grant from the New Zealand Government. AIIMS was established in New Delhi after former Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's intitial proposal to set up the institute in Calcutta was turned down by the then Chief Minister of West Bengal Dr Bidhan Chandra Roy..It was the vision of Rajkumari Amrit Kaur, the first Health Minister of India, to establish an institute of such nature in India. She envisioned an autonomous medical institute where students, doctors and teachers would live and learn side by side, with freedom to experiment with teaching and curriculum.

Ranking

AIIMS has been consistently ranked the top medical college in India to pursue an MBBS degree by India Today in annual surveys starting in 1997. AIIMS has held the top slot for the last six years in a row, and has been ranked first for 11 out of the 12 years that India Today has conducted the survey.

AIIMS' excellence has to do with several factors - small class size (50 per year), excellent library facilities, liberal clinically oriented teaching, research exposure and the ability to set its own curriculum.

Several surveys by The Week and Outlook magazines have named AIIMS the best hospital in India overall, as well as the best in several individual fields such as Cardiology, Neurology, Gastroenterology, Gynaecology and Ophthalmology, ahead of several specialised institutions.

The hospital has been able to maintain high standards of quality while seeing large numbers of patients (3.5 million in 2006) at very low cost to patients (10 Indian Rupees for outpatient doctor consultation equivalent to approx 0.25$ US), many of whom live in extreme poverty.

Academics

The courses offered by the institute are:

  • MBBS (Annual intake of 50 students)
  • MD/MS (Annual intake of around 217-220 students in 24 disciplines)
  • DM/MCh (in 12 and 5 disciplines respectively)
  • BSc courses in Nursing, Paramedical and medical specialities (Annual intake of 70 students in BSc hons and 51 in paramedical courses)
  • BSc (Honours) Human Biology (Till 2002)
  • MSc many specialities
  • MBiotech
  • All the PG courses
  • Etc and everything
  • PhD in 47 disciplines.

Admission

MBBS course

Every year AIIMS accepts 45 Indian students, of which 33 belong to General Category and 11 belong to the reserved category (SC/ST) and 1 orthopedic physically handicapped, based on the results of an all-India entrance examination for its MBBS program. The number of students who take the entrance exam every year varies from 70,000 to 80,000. The acceptance rate for admission to the undergrad course (medical school) is thus 45/75000 i.e 0.06%. This makes the AIIMS entrance exam, conducted on 1st of June every year, one of India's most difficult.

Five international students (nominated by Government of India from SAARC nations) complete the class size of 50. AIIMS also specializes in paramedical and basic science training for its undergrads. AIIMS is one of the few institutions where the faculty-student ratio is actually the reverse of the norm, i.e there are more faculty members than students. PG Cert. in Sociology

Post-graduate courses

There are about 42 speciality post-graduate courses conducted at AIIMS. The entry is through a nationwide competitive examination held every six months. These courses are highly coveted by the medical graduates across the country because of the institution's excellent medical services, exposure to unusual and referred cases and excellent opportunities for research.

Integrating clinics and research

AIIMS was originally built as a Superspeciality tertiary care (refers to India's three-tier health system with Primary clinics, which refer cases to secondary district level hospitals, which in turn refer cases to regional tertiary hospitals) centre with primary emphasis on research and specialized training facilities. MBBS is the basic medical course, the same as medical school. This is followed by specialization, which is the term for postgrad training in General Surgery, General Internal Medicine, Pediatrics and other fields. Superspecialities are those healthcare fields whose practitioners need specialised certification after completing their postgraduations, examples being cardiothoracic and vascular surgery, rheumatology, Neurology, Pediatric Neurology etc.There are at least 45 superspecialities at AIIMS. Having clinical superspecialities in the same campus as its major research facilities makes AIIMS optimally suited for nurturing best quality translational research{research which can translate into clinically useful end products}} in India. AIIMS publishes the National Medical Journal of India, among India's most prestigious clinical journals. Its impact factor is the highest among Indian journals after the Indian journal of Medical Research (published by the Indian Council of Medical Research).

Medical services

As per the AIIMS Citizen's Charter, doctors & staff at AIIMS strive to provide comprehensive, high quality tertiary care services including specialty and super-specialty services to all without consideration of caste, creed, religion, sex, economic status or disability. However, there may be some deficiencies due to extreme patient load and finite resources. Acquiring newer equipment for investigation, research and patient care is expedited as it is not constrained by funds.

Speciality Centres at AIIMS

There is a separate cardiothoracic and neurosciences centre (CNC) offering superspeciality level patient care, training and research in the respective fields.

Dr. Rajendra Prasad Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences is a 300 bed ophthalmic (eyes) speciality centre designated as the apex eye referral centre for India, and is the WHO collaborating centre for ophthalmic programs.

Recently Dr. BR Ambedkar Institute Rotary Cancer Hospital's construction has been completed. It specializes in medical, radiation and surgical oncology.

Jai Prakash Narayan Apex Trauma Centre is India's first full-fledged centre to treat victims of trauma. It is located about 1 KM west from the main campus.

CDER, the Centre for Dental Education and Research, located adjacent to the Hostels, is AIIMS' newest speciality centre.

AIIMS also runs the National Drug Dependence Treatment centre at Ghaziabad, one of Delhi's suburbs.

The Centre for Community Medicine at AIIMS maintains a teaching and treatment facility at Ballabgarh, a village outside Delhi, and some surrounding settlements. | | | | |

Residential facilities

AIIMS is a residential university where the faculty members, staff and students live on either the main campus or one of the several campuses which form a part of the Institution. There are five hostels for men undergraduate students (Hostel No.1-5) and a single hostel available for women undergraduate students (Hostel 10). These six hostels together can accommodate 850 students. For Post-graduate students, there are three hostels available for the men students and married couples(Hostel No.6-8) and a single hostel for the women students(Hostel No.9). Additional hostels for Nursing students and Post-graduate students are available at a facility in the Masjid Moth area, situated near to the main AIIMS campus.

Student Life and academics

MBBS life in AIIMS has a distinctive laid-back character. Attendance was not made compulsory until a few years ago, with students being given full liberty to organize their own study patterns.

The limitation of class size to just 50 per year ensures a close-knit student community of just over 250 people. The student body is predominantly male, with men forming approximately 80% of every batch. This is in contrast to the situation with most other medical colleges, where women are represented in larger numbers. Hostel life centers around the Quadrangle in the Gents' hostel, where most students can be seen lounging or studying.

AIIMS has a cosmopolitan student body, owing to its location in the national capital, as well as its countrywide reputation. Students from Malaysia, Indonesia, Nepal, Bhutan, Afghanistan, Mauritius and other nations add some of their own flavor. Exchange students from several Indian and international medical schools also mix with the existing crowd. The students are represented by the AIIMS Students' Union, headed by an executive committee that is elected every year from students of 4th year.

Students of AIIMS involve themselves in extra-academic movements, including Pulse, the annual, inter-college festival hosted by AIIMS. Pulse is easily India's largest medical fest, with daily attendance ranging from 5000 to 15000. A large, well-equipped students' gym, swimming pool and courts for tennis, basketball, volleyball, squash and soccer provide ample recreational opportunities. Prayatna is a student organization that arranges blood donation camps for contributing to the AIIMS blood bank.

Achievements

  • AIIMS is the first Indian center to perform a successful cardiac transplant. The surgery was performed by Dr.P Venugopal, the current director of AIIMS in 1994.
  • AIIMS is a leader in Stem Cell therapy, especially Cardiac and Neurological.
  • AIIMS has India's first and only minimally invasive surgery training centre, under collaboration with Germany.
  • It is a pioneer of robotic surgeries in India, particularly the Da Vinci system for urology, and robotic CTVS.

Controversies

Controversy regarding its Director

The Director of AIIMS has been sacked in 2006, after a certain amount of controversy which also included filing a case before the Delhi High Court.This happened as a result of a resolution which was passed by the 17 member governing body of the institute.Many people have touted this to be an extension of the Ramadoss (The Union Health Minister & The President of AIIMS) and P Venugopal rivalry. On May 8 2008,Venugopal was re-instated as AIIMS director by a Supreme Court judgement.

Institutional Quota

Prior to Supreme court judgment of 25th Aug, 2001 and changes in institutional quota, AIIMS was criticised for the way 33% of Post Graduation Seats were reserved for those who complete their MBBS in AIIMS. This has been rectified and now admissions to the post-graduate courses at AIIMS are much sought after from medical graduates throughout the country. There is now a curtain on the controversy for the present, since the Supreme Court judgment has in effect clearly defined the administrative intricacies and application of rules.

The honourable Supreme Court of India, stated that reserving 33 per cent seats for institutional candidates was in effect 100 per cent reservation for subjects, which was declared ultra vires the Constitution, and, hence, was struck down. The quota has been quashed by the Supreme Court as per its Judgment in the year 2001.

Caste Based Quota

AIIMS students joined in the nation-wide protests which took place in May, 2006. During the strike all the medical services were shut but parallel OPDs were started after the strike had been carried out for a long time. The strike continued till 31 May when the doctors called off their strike after the Supreme Court of India orders.

There is also a minuscule section of AIIMS students and doctors under the banner Progressive Medicos and scientists Forum (PMSF) who have traditionally taken a pro-reservation stance on the basis of social justice. Eventually the Supreme Court found sanctity in the voice raised by RDA-AIIMS and the NGO YouthForEquality through a PIL. The hon'ble SC stayed the OBC reservation bill on ground of being politically mooted and its judgment is awaited.

2006 Controversy over AIIMS' autonomy

AIIMS doctors again went on a flash strike in June-July 2006 over the issue of increasing political interference in the institution by the Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss. The doctors decided to go on strike following the controversial sacking of P. Venugopal, the former director of AIIMS. Venugopal challenged his sacking in the court of law, and the strike ended following the Delhi High Court's decision staying Venugopal's sacking on July 7, 2006. However, Ramadoss filed an appeal in the Supreme Court of India against the stay on the removal of AIIMS Director on the same day. On July 25, the government offered to withdraw its order sacking Venugopal but would raise charges against him before a single-bench court. During this controversy some patients of AIIMS died due to lack of treatment.

Clinical trials

In response to Right to Information Act query, AIIMS released information that as many as 49 babies many below one year of age have died at the institute while being subjected to clinical trials for testing new drugs and therapies over the years between January 2006 and August 2008. 4,142 babies, 2,728 of whom were below the age of one were enrolled for clinical trials by the institute's department of paediatrics.

Notable faculty and Alumni

  • Professor P. Venugopal, Padma Bhushan

Apart from being one of the longest-serving doctors at the institute, he is also credited with being the first Indian to perform a heart transplant.

  • Dr.L.K.Bhutani, ex-Dean & Director, A.I.I.M.S.

Dr Pankaj Jay Pasricha, Chief,Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology,Stanford School of Medicine.

  • Professor J.N. Pande (Former Head of Dept. of Medicine)
  • Professor G.P. Talwar
  • Professor V. Ramalingaswami (Former Director), Padma Vibhushan, first Director-General of Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)
  • Professor Samiran Nundy, Padma Shri, Former Head of Dept. of Gastrointestinal Surgery, Founder of National Medical Journal of India
  • Dr. S.N. Mehta (Former Head of Dept. of Surgery) Senior Consultant, Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals
  • Dr. KS Reddy, Padma Bhushan, Head of Public Health Foundation of India
  • Prof. T.P.Singh, (Distinguished Biotechnologist, DBT)
  • Dr. Deepak Chopra (popular spiritual Guru)
  • Dr. Sanjeev Chopra (Dean of CME, Harvard Medical School)
  • Dr. Abul K. Abbas (Chair Pathology Dept. UCSF, Author or Abbas Immunology, Editor of Robbins' Pathology 7th edition)
  • Dr. Anoop Misra - Director and Head, Department of Diabetes and Metabolism, Fortis Group of Hospitals, Padma Shri
  • Dr. Neerja Bhatla - Editor of Jeffcoate's Gynaecology
  • Dr. Ramesh Kaul, Pulmonologist and Founding chairman of American Journal of Biomedical Research
  • Dr. AK Hemal, Padma Shri
  • Dr. NP Gupta, Padma Shri
  • Dr. Randeep Guleria, Physician to the Prime Minister of India, noted Pulmonologist
  • Dr. K.K Talwar, former Professor in Dept. of Cardiology, present Director of PGIMER Chandigarh
  • Dr. Maharaj K Bhan - Former Professor of Pediatrics, presently Secretary, Department of Biotechnology, Government of India
  • Dr. VS Mehta- Padam Shri, Former head of department, Neurosurgery, and Chief- Neurosciecnes Centre. Acclaimed cerebrovascular surgeon, Director of Neurosciences, Paras Hospitals, Gurgaon, Haryana, India.
  • Dr. PN Tandon, Former head of department of Neurosurgery and Chief-Neurosciences, AIIMS. Acclaimed Neuroscientist, surgeon and researcher; various national and international honours and awards, Founder President of National Brain Research Centre, Manesar, Haryana.
  • Dr AK Banerji. Former head of department of Neurosurgery and Chief-Neurosciences, AIIMS. Acclaimed Cerebrovascualar surgeon; various national and international honours and awards. Former head of Neurosciences at VIMHANS Hosptial, New Delhi.

Recipients of SS Bhatnagar Award for Medical Research

Several present and former faculty members from AIIMS have won the SS Bhatnagar awards for Science and Technology. Given by the CSIR, they are among India's most prestigious research awards.

  • B. K Anand - Physiologist
  • V. Ramalingaswami - Pathologist
  • Pradeep Seth - MIcrobiologist, developed HIV vaccine
  • M. K Bhan - Pediatrician, worked on diarrhea
  • Shashi Wadhwa - Neuroscientist
  • N. K Mehra - Immunologist
  • Y. D Sharma - Biotechnologist
  • S. K Panda - Pathologist specializing in Viral Hepatitis

See also

References

External links

  • AOA (Aiimsonians of America), An alumni association of AIIMS graduates in America
  • Yahoo group of AIIMS graduates in America
  • The Students’ Union of AIIMS
  • AIIMS defies Minister, certificates issued without his signature
  • Neem-Hakeem , Forum of Students' Union AIIMS
  • Healthy-India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India
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