The National Law School University of India (NLSIU) will help the Rajiv Gandhi University Health Sciences (RGUHS) in its efforts to counter issues of public health by imparting knowhow in health laws.
This assistance is likely to be either in the form of a separate course in public health laws or as a module on the same within one or more courses that will be offered under the Institute of Public Health and Disease Control, an ambitious project that has been started by the RGUHS.
“As of now, the strategy is yet to be worked out and we are in the process of dialogue. We are at a preliminary stage of planning and detailing various aspects of the partnership,” said Dr O V Nandimath, associate professor, NLSIU, who is overseeing this collaboration.
The NLSIU, in any case, has been offering a postgraduate diploma course in Medical Law and Ethics for quite some time now.
“It will only be a matter of tweaking the existing curriculum. It might be offered as one module of public health law or only as a part of an entire programme, say for example under the Masters of Public Health programme,” said Nandimath.
The partnership between the two universities is in line with the institute’s interdisciplinary approach to the topic of public health, something that has been stressed even by Dr Rudiger Krech, Director, Department of Ethics and Social Determinants of Health, WHO, when he inaugurated the institute recently.
“As part of this interdisciplinary approach, RGUHS has initiated strategic linkages with a number of parties, one of which is the NLSIU. When talking about public health, we should understand that it is not only about curative measures, but more about the preventive and promotive efforts. It is in such a situation where policies and concerns about the law come in,” said Nandimath.
The institute is also looking at establishing similar partnerships with NGOs who are working in the field.
“Besides being cost intensive, curative measures ensure the restoration of original health of only one or few persons. Preventive measures on the contrary are fairly cheaper and lasting,” Nandimath said.
According to Dr K S Nagesh, Director, Department of Public Health, RGUHS, this partnership will probably start functioning by November or December as a pilot project first.
“The proposal with regard to the partnership is still awaiting the nod of the VC of NLSIU. As of now, we are looking forward to a workshop in September where a number of experts in the field will deliberate and decide on issues relating to public health,” said Nagesh.