Mumbai: Just a few days after taking out an order stating that DMLT holders would not be allowed to run pathlabs, the Maharashtra government seemed to have done a turnaround on its own decision. A fresh circular was taken out on Friday, which implied that the government is still not sure about its previous decision and may consider allowing technicians to run pathology labs in the state after all.
The reason for the turnaround of the order points out to lack of registered pathology doctors in the state, especially in the rural areas. As per the new order there are only 2271 registered MD pathologists in the state, while the number of pathology labs in the state surpass 50,000. Moreover, it implied that most of the registered doctors work in the urban areas, and majority of the services in the rural areas are being provided by Diploma in medical laboratory technology ( DMLT) and Certificate in Medical Lab Technology (CMLT) holders.
Hence keeping in mind the well-being of the patients, especially in rural areas, government justified in taking back its blanket ban.
This decision has clearly not been accepted by Maharashtra Association of Practicing Pathologists and Microbiologists (MAPPM) , who have alleged that the government has succumbed to the pressure of a powerful lobby.
“It is unfortunate that the state chose the interest of a few people over the health of citizens. The reality is that many are pursuing DMLT and CMLT (Certificate in Medical Lab Technology) after completion of class 12 and class 10 and running labs. We have often come across erroneous reports, including a case where an individual committed suicide after he was given a false HIV-positive report,” Dr Sanjay Yadav, President, MAPPM told TOI.
“There are only 3000-odd legal labs in the state. The state must act towards cracking down on illegal labs instead of trying to legalize those run by unqualified people,” he added.
While removing the blanket ban, the state has proposed regularization of DMLT holders running pathology labs. The state has decided that once the Maharashtra Paramedical Council Act, 2011 comes into effect, DMLT holders who register with the council will be allowed to run labs and certify reports. Having said that, it becomes important to point out that while the state has passed the Act in 2011, Maharashtra Paramedical Council is still not come into being.