Explained: Why Medical Commission Bill bothers doctors

  1. National Medical Commission(NMC) Bill,2019 is being criticised by medical fraternity even after getting passed in Parliament.
  2. The Indian Medical Association(IMA) has raised concerned over Section 32 of the NMC Bill that provides for licensing of non medical persons or Community Health Providers to practise modern medicine.
  3. According to the Bill,the Commission may grant limited licence to practice medicine at mid-level as Community Health Provider to such person connected with modern scientific medical profession who qualifies such criteria as may be specified by the regulations.
  4. However,IMA has said that the term Community Health Provider has been vaguely defined to allow anyone connected with modern medicine to get registered in NMC and be licensed to practise modern medicine.
  5. Further,the bill proposes a common final-year MBBS exam,the National Exit Test (NEXT) before an individual starts practising medicine and for seeking admission to postgraduate medical courses.It will also be a screening test for foreign medical graduates.
  6. However,IMA has said this will effectively removes the opportunity to reappear for PG selection.The current system allows medical graduates to practise irrespective of the status of his/her PG NEET.
  7. As per the Bill,of 25 members proposed for the NMC,only five would be elected which means the non-elected members would be either government officials or those nominated by the government.
  8. However,IMA has said that doctors representation should be more from democratically elected members than nominated.The NMC should retain its autonomy over its decisions and should be an independent body of regulators.