ISLAMABAD - In line with the commitment of the Prime Minister the Federal Ministry of Health has notified a new career structure which has been deliberated at length by the National Commission on Health and also been endorsed by the Pay and Pension Committee. The new structure has been de-linked from the Basic Pay Scale (BPS) and all the existing staffers have been given the option to join the new structure or remain with the existing basic pay scales. All fresh recruitments and hiring would however be made as per the new service structure. Furthermore necessary amendment in the law would soon be made to regularise the contractual medical officers. The doctors said that their demands have almost been met and all the health professionals including doctors, nurses, paramedics and supporting staff have been upgraded. He said now doctors would be appointed in grade 18 with the basic pay of Rs.24000, postgraduate Rs.50, 000 and medical officer Rs.65000. The doctors would also be entitled to two allowances including health professional allowance and non-practicing allowance. An exclusive career structure coupled with an independent pay scale for health personnel serving in public sector has been a dream for over two decades. It will enable them to have better prospects for career progression corresponding to their qualifications in the respective cadres. This will also develop their ownership towards profession as well as institutions and will surely bring their total commitment towards provision of health care services. Doctors are an integrally essential segment of the society but their demand for an appropriate career structure, enhancement of their salaries and future prospects remained un-heard for the last two decades. Last month in order to press for acceptance of their demands, for new service structure and raise in salary, doctors resorted to demonstrations followed by agitations including strikes all across the country. Taking cognisance of this situation, the federal secretary health carried out negotiations with the representatives of the doctors. It was essentially desired that the dialogue be proceeded on an acceptable course of action that will ensure that the doctors call off their strike and resume immediate services to the patients and in return the government would look into their grievances and accept their genuine demands in line with the recommendations of the National Commission on Health. A summary was moved to the Prime Minister, strongly recommending the need, of a new Career Structure for Health Personnel (CSHP) and announced it in the National Assembly to illustrate the present governments policy of recognising professionals in all fields and its commitment towards resolution of doctors long standing issues in an amicable manner.