AYUSH gasping for breath due to government’s neglect.
There are not enough number of qualified practitioners of alternative systems of medicine, though people suffering from ailments still repose faith in them since they are relatively free of side-effects.
Though the number of aspirants to study of Ayurveda, Yoga-Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH) is growing steadily, the seats available in the existing colleges account for only nine per cent of the total medical seats in the state..
The 40 MBBS colleges in the state have a total intake of approximately 5,500 students a year, which is likely to be enhanced by additional 800 MBBS seats. But the intake of students is just 470 for AYUSH colleges which include four Ayurveda, two Unani and four Homoeopathy colleges in the entire the state. In comparison, Maharashtra and Karnataka have 68 and 58 colleges respectively.
Former additional director of homoeopathy Dr N. Linga Raju says: “ For every ten years a new Homoeopathy college is established which has to be considered as an achievement. In our state we have four Homoeopathy colleges with an intake of approximately 180 students. Another 40 seats are likely to be added this academic year.”
The budget for 2013-14 for various colleges under AYUSH varies. Ayurveda has been allocated Rs 17.21 crore, Homoeopathy Rs 15.82 crore and Unani Rs 8.27 crore. Of the overall allocation, around 90 percent is spent on salaries and the remaining 10 percent on infrastructure of the colleges and the three state-run pharmacies. All the colleges together receive Rs 41 crore and the pharmacies around Rs 1 crore. The lack of funds has cost the establishment of new institutions and recruitment of faculty and improving facilities at the existing hospitals as well as colleges, say officials. [Source]