Nearly 2.7 lakh doctors affiliated to the voluntary organisation Indian Medical Association on Wednesday held a nationwide protest against the government’s proposal to dissolve the Medical Council of India (MCI), which has been under scrutiny for graft following a report by a Parliamentary Standing Committee.
The government think-tank NITI Aayog has proposed scrapping of MCI and replace it with the National Medical Commission (NMC).
The IMA has opposed the draft Bill on the National Medical Commission, 2016, citing concern that the NMC will have non-elected members nominated by the government.
“Anywhere in the world, medical profession is bestowed with reasonable autonomy. Patient care and safety are the main benefits of such autonomy. Regulators need to have autonomy and be independent of administrators. The proposed NMC will be a regulator appointed by administrators under their direct control.
“IMA supports suitable amendments in the existing IMC Act. IMA is against scrapping it totally and making it a non autonomous body,” said K K Aggarwal, National President (Elect) and Secretary General and Dr S S Agarwal, National President of the IMA in a letter to Union Health Minister J P Nadda.
The World Medical Association (WMA), which is headed by former MCI chief Ketan Desai, has also extended its support to the IMA over the issue.
Earlier this year, the Supreme Court of India had appointed a three-member panel headed by former CJI R M Lodha to oversee functioning of the MCI, which regulates medical practice in the country, for at least a year.