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Health services hit as doctors protest against NMC Bill

It Will Promote Quackery: Former IMA President On National Medical Commission Bill

Thousands of out-patients were affected across Karnataka on Tuesday due to a private doctors' strike against a new medical bill.

Bhubaneswar: Several medical students today staged a demonstration near Raj Bhavan in Odisha capital as a part of Indian Medical Association's call for a 12-hour shutdown of all private hospitals in the country.

"This is beneficial to the medical profession", he said in the Rajya Sabha after members raised the issue of strike by the doctors across the country against the Bill. "Since, the strike may involve a large number of medical professionals, it is anticipated that there would be inconvenience to the patient care services in hospitals", the health ministry advisory said.

NMC Bill introduced the concept of "bridge courses" that allows Ayush doctors to practice allopathy that irked modern medicine doctors.

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.

IMA, which is not a statutory body, has been opposing the Bill to set up the NMC ever since it received the union cabinet clearance earlier last month, and has demanded amendments in it.

The association said the new bill makes provisions for only 40 per cent seats in a private medical college to be regulated as far as fee was concerned while for the rest, the private colleges are free to fix the rates.

Dr Bhupendra Shah, president of the IMA Gujarat Branch said that in its present form, the NMC is a pro private management and pro-rich bill that will pave the way for widespread corruption.

IMA has four demands - One elected representative in NMC from the Registered Medical Graduates of every state and no separate registration for AYUSH.

The implementation of the new bill of the government under National Commission proposal will strengthen the medical colleges.