Sri Lanka’s Durdans, India’s Astron to train paramedical professionals

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s Durdans Hospital has tied up with India’s Astron Institute of International Studies to offer programs to train paramedical professionals in the healthcare sector who are in short supply.

“The shortage of skilled manpower is one of the most critical constraints the industry is faced with,” said Rakshitha Tudawe, managing director of Amrak Institute of Medical Sciences set up between Durdans and Astron.
“To improve patient care we lack in the area of skilled manpower,” he told a news conference.

The on-campus and online courses offered by Amrak provide training and qualifications not only for school leavers but experienced health care professionals like nurses wanting to enhance skills to become neonatal nurses who care for babies born premature or sick.

Such formal course have not been available in the island till now with hospitals resorting to training skilled staff in-house by experienced doctors, nurses and technicians.

The Amrak programs aim to attract rural schools leavers and costs have been kept down with the most expensive one-year course costing 90,000 rupees. Online courses start at 40,000 rupees.

Courses offered by Amrak Institute of Medical Sciences include those to train dialysis technicians, laboratory technicians, cardiac care technicians, radiology technicians, operation theatre technicians and medical records and health information technicians.

Amrak’s online courses also give students practical exposure in hospitals, just like in India where the courses were designed.

“There is a current gap in the market to achieve excellence in service delivery,” said Tudawe.

Hospitals will not be able to deliver quality health care if they do not have the right people who are skilled despite having all the latest technology.

Neeru Bhatia, executive director of Astron Institute of International Studies, said the firm is a hardcore health care consulting organisation in India focusing only on hospital planning and design, from concept to commissioning of hospital projects.





“Paramedical technicians are a very rare commodity,” she told the news conference. “In India we found trained human resources were lacking everywhere. That’s how we came up with Astron Institute, to bridge the high gap between supply and demand for this resource.”

Astron and Amrak courses are hybrid ones offering academic training and hands-on training in hospital so that students can qualify within a year or so and get jobs.

“Our aim is to increase skill building of students so as soon as a student completes the course he is ready to work,” Bhatia said.
(Colombo/January 10/2019)

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