SAITM students said yesterday that they hope that the government will take urgent note of the many obstacles placed in their path and adopt immediate and appropriate measures to allow them to take their rightful place as doctors within the health structure of Sri Lanka.South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) MBBS students expressed this sentiment addressing the media yesterday.
"All students registered for the MBBS Degree have been studying under some of the best professors and lecturers in the country for the past 6+ years, such as Prof. Neville Perera, Prof. Deepal Weerasekera, Prof. Deepthi Samarage, Prof. Kolitha Sellahewa, Dr. Narendra Pinto, Dr. Vasantha Perera, Dr. Mahendra Perera and a host of other excellent teachers," they said.
Our graduates are knowledgeable, capable and highly committed to assume their rightful place as fully-fledged doctors to serve Sri Lanka. We can state with utmost confidence that the entry criteria for the SAITM MBBS programme is regulated by the Higher Education Ministry.
“All students currently registered for the MBBS degree programme have fulfilled the UGC entry criteria. Moreover, the final examinations for the MBBS have been conducted according to UGC regulations along with the participation of both internal examiners from SAITM and external examiners from state medical faculties,” SAITM MBBS Graduate Dilshan Fernando explained.
“SAITM students have always said they are ready to face any unbiased examination, if so required, which will surely provide the students with the opportunity to dispel once and for all the myths pertaining to the quality of our education," said Prageeth Wimalachandra, currently reading for his MBBS Degree.
The students emphasized that they too are the children of Sri Lanka. Contrary to what is said by various parties, they are not all from super rich families. "The majority of them are from middle class families whose parents work hard to pay for our education. Moreover, SAITM upto now has awarded Rs. 500 million worth of scholarships for deserving students".
“Although the Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) is legally bound to provide us provisional registration as intern medical officers, the SLMC has unfortunately rejected this possibility. Therefore, one of our colleagues has challenged this matter in courts and we are positive that the truth will finally prevail,” SAITM MBBS Graduate, Tharindu Ruwanpathiranage, said.
"We, the students of SAITM are united in our demand that we be given the opportunity to prove our worth to the citizens of Sri Lanka as doctors, are amongst the best and are ready to serve our motherland" they said.