Rector of Medical University Dismissed for Disclosure of Flaws in Placement of Graduates
The Health Ministry didn’t extend the labor contract to Pavel Bespalchuk, rector of the Belarusian State Medical University. Pavel Bespalchuk could have retired quietly, as many Belarusian officials do. However, he was brave enough to publish a scandalous article in the newspaper Vesnik BDMU (BSMU Courier) under the title Till 31 November. In this publication he describes how the graduates of his university are placed to jobs. He characterized the situation as ‘lawlessness that has reached its apogee’.
According to Mr. Bespalchuk, during the last two years the university commission on job placement was isolated from the placement of graduates. Instead, the question of placement was solved by the Ministry of Health, which resulted in absurd cases when the best students were sent to desolate provinces to work there outside the speciality they were taught at the last years of university studies, whereas students with poor academic progress were placed to the leading clinics. Sometimes even the students who had been given facilities with the condition that they would work in the provinces they came from were freed from this obligation ‘in connection with the decision of the minister’.
Pavel Bespalchuk tried to change the situation and publicly criticized the Ministry of Health for its bold interference in the procedure of job placement and raised this issue at the sittings of the ministry board. However, instead of getting the justice restored he just got troubles.
The question of Bespalchuk’s retirement was discussed in the medical circles as a fact accomplished as early as in January 2008, when the health minister Vasil Zharko proposed him to quit on his own will. But Bespalchuk refused to do it.
In summer 2008 the commission of the Control Revision Board of the Ministry of Health Care was directed to the BSMU. The commission worked there for more than a month, thoroughly studying every paper. As a result there weren’t found any law violations in the activities of the rector. There were no legal reasons to dismiss him from his position.
On 10 November the labor contract of Mr. Bespalchuk with the Ministry of Health Care expired. It was clear that the ministry would not extend it.
What concerns the future of the ex-rector, it seems quite clear. Despite his 12-year service as rector, he continued working at the university department of traumatology and orthopaedics, situated in the city center of traumatology and orthopaedics of Minsk clinical hospital #6. He was gave consultations and made surgical operations. Pavel Bespalchuk is considered an outstanding surgeon in operations on palms.
‘I hope that I will not part with the university and will be left at the department,’ said Pavel Bespalchuk in a telephone talk with correspondent of Zautra Tvayoi Krainy. ‘What concerns my dismissal, there’s nothing to comment. The contract is over, it’s all… I don’t complain. There’s a Chinese proverb: happiness is liberation from concerns…’