IMA urges students to protest against the National Medical Commission bill
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IMA urges students to protest against the National Medical Commission bill

The NMC bill is a fresh attempt to remove the regulatory cobwebs that cling to medical education and repurpose it for strengthening the health system and stimulating productive research.

pune Updated: Mar 22, 2018 15:20 IST
Jui Dharwadkar
Jui Dharwadkar
Hindustan Times, Pune
BJ medical symposium sees IMA call for students to join protest in Delhi on March 25.(HT PHOTO)

Indian medical association (IMA) has appealed to students taking the bachelor of medicine and bachelor of surgery (MBBS) to protest against the national medical commission (NMC) bill, calling it anti-student and anti-patient.

Members of IMA on Wednesday conducted a symposium at BJ medical college on ‘Challenges ahead for the medical profession’.

During the symposium, members of IMA appealed to students to come to Delhi on March 25 and protest against the bill.

The IMA has been strongly opposing the bill which seeks to replace the medical council of India (MCI) with a national medical commission (NMC).

“NMC seeks to replace the MCI, but it will have just 10 per cent elected members, while 90 per cent of the members will be nominated. Hence, the central government will have complete control over it,” IMA state secretary, Dr Parthiv Sanghvi, said while explaining the reason for their opposition.

The bill has been referred to the parliamentary standing committee on health.

On Wednesday, IMA launched an IMA medical students network during so that the student community could also participate in the protest against the bill.

”Presently MBBS students graduating from a college get a temporary certificate from Maharashtra medical council. The students have to then do an internship for a year after which they get a permanent registration certificate and can practice as doctors. With NMC, these students will have to appear for national licentiate examination (NLE) after their internship which would be of the standard of civil service examinations. Students who fail to clear this will not be able to practice as doctors. Hence, in the future there would be fully qualified but unemployed medical students which is a concern,” Dr Sanghvi said.

Dr Sanghvi noted that presently Indian students who go to foreign universities have to clear an exit test if they wish to practice in India. “This exit test is of a very high standard and the passing is around 30 per cent. With NMC, foreign medical graduates are exempt from appearing for any exit test and can come to India and practice medicine easily which is unjust,” he said.

IMA opposes ‘ridge course’ for ayurveda, other alternative streams

Members of IMA on Wednesday also strongly opposed the provision of a bridge course available for ayurveda, yoga and naturopathy, unani, siddha and homeopathy (Ayush) doctors under the NMC, which would allow them to practice allopathy. The members said that this would lower the quality of treatment and patients would suffer.

First Published: Mar 22, 2018 15:13 IST