Medical education needs overhaul, PG seats must go up: Top docs on NMC bill

Bengaluru: Members of the Association of Healthcare Providers of India (AHPI), Karnataka Chapter, discussed the draft National Medical Commission and expressed their reservations over a few provisions. 

“The National Medical Commissio  should be an autonomous body without government controls. But the government, as also private hospitals, can have representatives in NMC," said Dr B.S. Ajaikumar, Karnataka president, AHPI. 
He said that medical education is important to address the quality of doctors. Dr Thomas Chandy, Advisor, Association of National Board Accredited Institutions (ANBAI), Karnataka Chapter, supported the Bill saying, “Medical education needs a serious spruce-up. The NMC Bill will once and for all resolve the issue of equivalence between MD/MS and NBE degrees. The bill should ensure quality, affordable and accessible healthcare to all."

Dr Devi Shetty, chairman, Narayana Health, and Founder Member, AHPI, said, “We need to increase the number of postgraduate medical seats and bring down the cost of medical education. Sadly, medical education is kept separated from rural healthcare. We are going through a crisis in delivery of healthcare and we rank way below Iraq and Iran. Our government hospitals have a shortage of 80% for medical specialties. We need to make government hospitals vibrant and for that we need to increase postgrad students. Opportunities should be the same for rural and urban aspirants." 

Areas of concern
1 The proportion of elected representatives from medical fraternity in the NMC is 20%, which is inadequate.
2Modern medicine is evidence-based and rooted in standard treatment protocols, which has nothing in common with the traditional systems of medicine. Mixing up of these systems through bridge courses will not be appropriate. 
3 After successful completion of MBBS, another National Licentiate Exam is superfluous. 

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