KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia There are a total of 5,082 specialist doctors in various fields currently serving the Health Ministry, as of May 31 this year, the Dewan Rakyat was told today.

Its Minister Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said of the total, surgeons made up the biggest number with 300.

He said the ministry had always encouraged medical officers to undergo specialist training in order to meet the increasing demand for specialist doctors.

The ministry also encourages medical officers to undergo training through parallel route programmes, he said in reply to a question from Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique (BN-Kota Tinggi) on whether steps were being taken to raise the number of specialist doctors and reducing the long waiting time for patients.

Dzulkefly said other steps were by reappointing retired specialist doctors on a contract basis to serve the ministry, obtaining the services of specialists from the private sector as well as encouraging Malaysian specialists residing overseas to return home and serve in the country.

Besides that he said the ministry had also increased the intake of medical officers for the ‘Hadiah Latihan Persekutuan’ programme to 1,000 people.

Dzulkefly said among the steps taken to reduce waiting time for treatment was by expanding the cluster hospital concept to rural district hospitals.

The ministry has also adopted the Lean Healthcare initiative at emergency departments of hospitals as well as in specialist clinics to help reduce the waiting time for patients and speed up the admission process, he said adding that doctors were also allowed to carry out elective surgeries on Saturdays.

Source: NAM News Network

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