Creating a country imbued with a scientific culture was Jawaharlal Nehru’s dream, and immediately after independence he prepared a grand design to achieve it. Among the temples of modern India which he designed, was a centre of excellence in the medical sciences. Nehru’s dream was that such a centre would set the pace for medical education and research in Southeast Asia, and in this he had the wholehearted support of his Health Minister, Rajkumari Amrit Kaur.
The dreams of Nehru and Amrit Kaur converged to create a proposal which found favor with the government of New Zealand. A generous grant from New Zealand under the Colombo Plan made it possible to lay the foundation stone of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in 1952. The AIIMS was finally created in 1956, as an autonomous institution through an Act of Parliament, to serve as a nucleus for nurturing excellence in all aspect of health care.
And in 2014, apart from AIIMS at New Delhi, six new AIIMS at Bhopal, Bhubaneswar, Jodhpur, Patna, Raipur, and Rishikesh, also became partially functional. Each of these six AIIMS has 18 specialties and 16 super specialities, MBBS and nursing admission. Departments such as emergency, trauma, and blood bank have also now become functional. Presently, on an average, more than 15,000 patients cumulatively are visiting OPD daily in these six AIIMS. Also, at an average, equal numbers of patients are getting treatment in IPD every month. More than 4000 major surgeries cumulatively are getting performed on monthly basis in these six AIIMS. All specialty departments and most of the super-specialty departments have become functional.
During the last 5 years, 15 new AIIMS have been approved under Phase-II, IV, V, VI, and VII of PMSSY, which are being set up in the country. OPD along with diagnostic and pathology services have commenced at five places viz. AIIMS Raebareli, AIIMS Mangalagiri, AIIMS Gorakhpur, AIIMS Nagpur, and AIIMS Bathinda.