Ayurveda, homoeopathy docs can take bridge course to practise allopathy: Bill

The Bill, introduced in Lok Sabha on Friday, by Union Health Minister J P Nadda, seeks to overhaul the structure of medical education

Written by Abantika Ghosh | New Delhi | Updated: December 30, 2017 7:17 am
National Medical Commission Bill 2017, Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Homoeopathy, allopathic, J P Nadda, Indian Express The Bill was introduced by Union Health Minister J P Nadda

In a controversial provision, the National Medical Commission Bill 2017 envisages allowing Ayush practitioners (Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy) to practise modern (allopathic) medicine after clearing a bridge course. The Bill, introduced in Lok Sabha on Friday, by Union Health Minister J P Nadda, seeks to overhaul the structure of medical education, introduce a medical exit examination and bring an end to the Medical Council of India.

It envisages a “joint sitting” of the (National Medical) Commission, the Central Council of Homoeopathy and the Central Council of Indian Medicine at least once a year “to enhance the interface between homoeopathy, Indian Systems of Medicine and modern systems of medicine”. These three will decide “approving specific bridge course that may be introduced for the practitioners of homoeopathy and of Indian Systems of Medicine to enable them to prescribe such modern medicines at such level as may be prescribed”.

The meeting will also finalise, the Bill says, by an affirmative vote of all members present and voting, approvals for “specific educational modules or programmes that may be introduced in the undergraduate course and the postgraduate course across medical systems and to develop bridges across various systems of medicine and promote medical pluralism”.

Calling for reform of the Medical Council of India, the Bill says that a 25-member commission selected by a search committee headed by the Union Cabinet Secretary will replace the elected MCI. A medical licentiate (exit) examination will be instituted within three years of its passage by Parliament. A medical advisory council that will include one member representing each state and union territory (vice-chancellors in both cases); chairman, University Grants Commission, and director of the National Accreditation and Assessment Council will advise and make recommendations to the NMC.

Four boards dealing with undergraduate, postgraduate medical education, medical assessment and rating and ethics and registration will regulate the sector. Replacing the MCI with a new regulatory structure was necessitated by allegations of corruption dogging the council ever since the much publicised arrest of its then chief Ketan Desai in 2010. In a chapter on corruption in MCI, the Parliamentary Standing Committee for Health and Family Welfare writes: “…the President, MCI during evidence before the Committee admitted that corruption was there when there was sanctioning of medical colleges, or increasing or decreasing seats. The Committee has also been informed that the private medical colleges arrange ghost faculty and patients during inspections by MCI and no action is taken for the irregularity. The Committee has also been given to understand that MCI is proactive in taking action on flimsy grounds against Government Medical Colleges which are 100% better.”

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  1. Puneet Gupta
    Jan 5, 2018 at 6:51 am
    👍Integration of HUMAN HEALTH SCIENCES is a great idea and INDIA can show a GREAT WAY FORWARD. 💥Immediatly Govt shall start building simple OPD infrastructure within EXISTING modern ALLOPATHY hospitals say a FIVE LEVEL building with chambers for NON ALLOPATHY Doctors say Naturopathy, Yoga, medical astrology, Homeopathy, Unani, Ayurveda, etc etc and waiting areas for patients. 🥕There shall similarily RURAL INFRASTRUCTURE FOR NON ALLOPATHY SYSTEMS . 🥁Govt shall be then allowing same EDUCATIONAL MEDICAL COLLEGE faculty and facility to teach all subjects of MODERN MEDICINE in 4 years to all BRANCHES, only in Last TWO YEAR STUDENT SHALL BE SENT TO PRE- SELECTED stream of ALLOPATHY, AYURVEDA, UNANI, HOMEOPATHY, GENERAL SURGERY, GENERAL MEDICINE, GYNAE, PEDIATRICS,Yoga, etc etc . 💎Thus all shall be awarded MDOC in respective field rather then MBBS so every Indian shall know of new breed of INTEGRATED HEALTHCARE SERVICES MANPOWER and INFRASTRUCTURE
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    1. Salahudeen Koya
      Jan 5, 2018 at 12:01 am
      But, we need a combined syllabus for upcoming doctors. Basics approach of all systems medicines from all systems. 7 years with permission to practice with study after 5 years. The course may be called Master of Bharatheeya Medical Practices(MBPS). There will be no more allopathi/homeopathi/Ayurveda or Siddha doctor separately. Target is single, human. So only doctors.
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      1. Jyoti Bapat
        Jan 2, 2018 at 5:02 pm
        This is just a shortcut our government is trying to adopt. They want to give healthcare in rural areas without actually addressing the real problem. If acquiring allopathic knowledge is so simple that it can be achieved by just doing a bridge course, then why at all take admissions to proper M.B.B.S. and allopathic Post graduate studies?
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        1. Milind Bapat
          Jan 1, 2018 at 10:10 pm
          If government is serious about people's health, it should spend more on health than meagre 1.6 percent, Instead of interfering with education and with private practice of highly qualified people who are looking after 70 percent of Indian population. MCI was the only good thing to have happened to Indian medical scene and is the reason behind excellence of Indian doctors. Government has just found an excuse to shut it and control medical scene in its typically autocratic manner that it knows so well.
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          1. Gaurav Kapoor
            Dec 31, 2017 at 5:42 pm
            Even I should be allowed to fly a plane, for the reason I know how to drive. Do they even know what they are prescribing.. the drugs,about their pharmacodynamics, side effects, contraindications. Do they have knowledge of differentiating MI pain from gastritis. What would Resp Mr Nadda prefer for chest pain.. an ecg with correct and timely diagnosis and treatment of MI by QUALIFIED MEDICAL PROFFESIONAL or he would just prefer to go with ‘churan’ and pudin hara ? This isn’t a step forward.. this is actually a step back in today’s world.. juz to save them with expenses. May God bless our Nation !!
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            1. Gaurav Kapoor
              Dec 31, 2017 at 5:46 pm
              Not against any other forms of therapy, but one should write what they know about. One should be responsible for what they prescribe to the people.
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