Colleges should focus on health research

Apr 1, 2013 by

Source: The Times Of India

BANGALORE: Our mushrooming higher education institutions are of little help, unless they lay emphasis on quality education, and health institutions focus on community-oriented research, especially malnutrition.

Every year, the government focuses on setting up new professional colleges. Instead, it should give importance to quality education and research, which Karnataka lacks, when compared to other progressive states.

Health institutions should concentrate on public health and community-oriented research. Many children in North Karnataka suffer from malnutrition; research on its eradication will be helpful to society. The institutions could also study ways to bring down infant mortality rate, besides focusing on nutritional aspects for a healthy society.

Research should also be taken up on tropical and sub-tropical diseases, besides water-borne illnesses, dengue and malaria. While western countries have managed to eradicate malaria, it is still prevalent in India, and we are yet to find lasting solutions to such issues.

The government should improve the quality of BSc and MSc courses, and put them on par with international standards. Scientific temper is missing, though we have many facilities and centres like the Indian Institute of Science and NAAC headquarters in Bangalore.

At KLE University, we are giving importance to community-oriented research; even the health secretary of the USA visited our centre to know more about it. Public Health Foundation had approached KLE to undertake research on public health centres, for which Manitoba University from Canada has come forward to help.

The government has also failed to come up with long-term policy. If it focuses on health education, we can think of a bright future ahead.

The person:

Chandrakant Kokate was appointed first vice-chancellor of KLE University in March 2006. He has 40 years of experience in academics, research and administration. He was also vice-chancellor of Kakatiya University and Nagarjuna University. He was a visiting scientist in Germany.

He served as president of the Pharmacy Council of India from 1998 to 2003. He held positions in All India Council for Technical Education, National Assessment and Accreditation Council, University Grants Commissions Committee for Deemed Universities, Defence Research and Development Organisation and Drugs Technical Advisory Board. He has received many national awards and citations, including the Indira Priyadarishini National Award and Best Teacher Award.

Priority:

More emphasis on quality higher education. The quality of BSc and MSc courses should be on par with international standards. Research quality should be improved.

In North Karnataka, many children are suffering from malnutrition. Health research should focus on malnutrition, infant mortality and nutrition for a healthy society.

Quote:

The government should focus on quality higher education instead of quantity higher education. Apart from this, quality research and long-term government policies are needed. Health institutions should give more importance to community-oriented research and also take up malnutrition.