Health services hit as doctors protest against NMC Bill

Health services hit as doctors protest against NMC Bill

Health services hit as doctors protest against NMC Bill

Doctors will observe January 2 as "black day" to protest against the National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill. Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan has directed the panel to file its report before the Budget session.

While doctors in government and medical college hospitals boycotted out-patient services for one hour in the morning, the strike was being observed from 6 AM to 6 PM in private hospitals.

The IMA, which has 2.77 lakh members, claims the new Bill will make the system prone to corruption.

The former president of IMA said Dr K K Aggarwal also slammed the proposed bill.

Meanwhile, the All India Medical Students' Association too has joined the strike call of IMA and has called for a student strike on Tuesday.

"We will close outpatient services to send out a message that the Bill is draconian", said Dr B Veeranna, secretary, Indian Medical Association, Bengaluru. Senior doctors from IMA are protesting another proposal of NMC which allows unrestricted fee in 60 per cent of medical seats in private medical colleges.


"We want the central government to reconsider the National Medical Commission Bill".

Aiming to ensure transparency, the bill also seeks to allow practitioners of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy, to practice modern medicine once they complete a short-term "bridge" course.

The bill has provisions that would adversely affect the health sector and medical education in the country, he alleged.

There is also a strong resentment against the examination that will be conducted by the NMC for medical students after completion of the course to be eligible as practising doctors. And the majority of the new council members will be appointed by the government.

Some other contentions with the bill include representation of just five states at any given point in time in the NMC, bringing the state medical councils under the NMC.

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