Background: There is hardly any structured study reporting the perspective of medical students, with regard to the medical education system in Maharashtra, which is facing challenges. Aim: A perception study of students was conducted to explore the situation, challenges, and consequent solutions of medical education in Maharashtra. Settings and Design: A descriptive perception study. Materials and Methods: A structured questionnaire was e-mailed to 92 students, and interviews with seven key-informants comprising of faculty, administrators, and policy makers were conducted, to gather qualitative insights. Results: Thirty-seven student replies were received and analyzed. The satisfaction level of student respondents for various factors was as follows: infrastructure 18/37 (48.6%), quality of teaching 14/37 (37.8%), patient population 22/37 (59.5%), and administration 8/37 (21.6%). Ninety-two percent (34/37) of the students stated that the fundamental problem was the inability of the system to attract good, quality teachers. The reasons stated were low salaries, low level of job satisfaction, high level of bureaucracy, and high work load. Conclusions: The medical education system in Maharashtra is viewed as being stagnant. The respondents emphasized an urgent need for educational reforms, which should include better compensation for teachers, sharing of facilities between government and private medical colleges, and improved efficiency of the Medical Council of India. In the long run a public-private mix with sharing of resources may be a plausible solution.
- Medical education