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5 Critical Decisions before the new MCI Board of Governors

5 Critical Decisions before the new MCI Board of Governors

New Delhi: With the Union Cabinet all of a sudden announcing the dismantling of the Medical Council of India and appointing Board of Governors to run its affairs, the 7 member BoG indeed has its hands full now. Running the apex medical regulator along with the high positional responsibilities they are already bearing is indeed going to be a tough task. Having said that, their appointment has indeed brought a new hope to many in the medical fraternity who had lost hope of reform after the NMC Bill did not see any action in the last session of the parliament.

With taking charge, there are some critical decisions that need immediate attention of the BoG. These include some decisions where MCI was about to take a call on, some decisions on which it was sitting, while some which appeared to have been forgotten by the council.

Here are some of the decisions pending before the MCI, which we hope that Board of Governors will take an immediate call on

MD-DNB equivalence

Probably the biggest bone of contention that has emerged in the recent times between the union government and the erstwhile members of the Medical Council of India is the issue of MD-DNB equivalence. The Government has made its intention clear of providing equivalence to DNB candidates from large private hospitals ( more than 500 beds) to enter the pool of medical academia (Read- DNB will be Equivalent to MD in ALL Respects: Health Ministry Clarifies on NMC Bill) while the council has been clearly stuck on its stand of making such candidates do additional 3 year residency in medical colleges, in order to become eligible for faculty posts.

With the Health Ministry, sending back the previous recommendations of the MCI in the matter, the decision was yet again to come up in the council meeting. With the BoG taking over, the decision will now be made by the 7 member committee.

Read Also: MD-DNB Equivalence: MCI, Oversight Committee to jointly decide fate of DNB candidates

Sources in the Health Ministry informed Hindu that this will be the first thing on the agenda of the Board of Governors (BoG) when they hold their meeting. If the equivalence is granted, around 2000 DNB candidates will be immediately available to join as medical faculty in medical colleges, and will indeed provide respite to the suffocating shortage of medical teachers in the country.

 New MBBS Curriculum

In an era, where medical advancements and breakthroughs take place almost daily, our MBBS students have been studying a curriculum that is at least two decades old. With much procedural delays and debates, MCI this year finally announced that the new curriculum will be launched from academic year 2019-20 and the training of teachers has been started

Read Also: Coming Soon: New MBBS Curriculum

While many new/updated modules valid to the current setup such as Ethics, Communication have been added, the details of the new MBBS curriculum are still a mystery as the final approval and launch by the council is still pending. With the BoG taking over, the finalisation as well as the herculean task of its successful implementation now lies in the hands of the 7 member committee.

Unique Permanent Registration Number (UPRN)

One Country- One Registration- The decision of having one MCI number- a UPRN that would act as an Aadhaar card of doctors to , was indeed hailed by the fraternity when it was announced. The UPRN number stands as a solution to a number of issues that are plaguing the medical practitioners across the country, including duplicate registrations across various states, renewal of registrations, as well as that the growing menace fake medical practitioners. Moreover, it would finally help the regulator create a National Registry of Doctors. Till date, no one in the country, not even the Medical Council of India has any idea of how many doctors are actually practicing in the country and in which domain, a fact which stands as a basic requirement for any public health policy in the country.

Read Also: Medical Council of India UPRN Policy decoded with Dr Jayshree Mehta, President,MCI

While the policy towards UPRN was announced in 2017, its implementation is yet to see the light of the day. With the BoG under the chairmanship a NITI Ayog Member taking charge of the Medical Council of India, action in this regard must see some movement.

CPS Recognition

While DNB candidates in the country are fighting for the equivalence,  candidates having degrees from College of Physicians and Surgeons are fighting for recognition. MCI on its part has been doing a Yo-Yo Movement when it comes to decision of recognition of these courses. In October 2017, through a gazette MCI recognised many CPS diplomas, while just 4 months later, through another notification de-recognised many other CPS degrees.

Read Also: U-Turn: Ministry of Health De-Recognizes PG diplomas offered by CPS, Mumbai

Recently Bombay High Court made a strong observation against these courses, asking the MCI to take corrective steps in the matter.

Read Also: CPS PG Diploma not Specialist Degree: HC slams govt, asks MCI to take corrective steps

Union Health Secretary, Preeti Sudan recently informed Hindu Business line, this issue is also on the agendas that the BoG is soon going to address.

Medical College Inspections

There are three sides of every MCI inspection- one the medical college’s, one MCI’s and ONE that needs to be video-recorded, compiled and promptly put in public domain so that medical aspirants exactly know what sort of medical college they are seeking admission into. With the battle for recognition for majority of private medical colleges now reaching the doors of the court, even the Supreme Court recently lamented, “there are incessant disputes which reach this Court about what actually transpired at inspections of various private medical colleges by the Medical Council of India (MCI). The parties contest virtually every fact that is recorded in an inspection.”

While the court sought the assistance of technocrat Nandan Nilekani in providing tech solutions including AI solutions, the issue runs still deeper. As all the alleged corruption at the council finds its roots in the approval and recognition of private medical colleges and their degrees, any move towards a  “Swacch Medical Council” will only come, if the BoG takes decisions to instill transparency and standardisation in the process of inspection of Medical Colleges.

Read Also: Make public full report of MCI inspection of medical colleges within 6 weeks: CIC to MCI

The Author is the Editor in Chief of Medical Dialogues 


Disclaimer: The views expressed in the above article are solely those of the author/agency in his/her private capacity and do not represent the views of Medical Dialogues.

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18 comment(s) on 5 Critical Decisions before the new MCI Board of Governors

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  1. user
    DR N.GUNASEKARAN Dean October 24, 2018, 9:14 am

    The need of medical fraternity and need of essential medical equipments for practical utility must be decided by medical personal in the field of practising medical institution. It should not be decided by nonmedical person who is sitting in front of the computer or catalogue kept in the library which is a referral centre. We want medical curriculum must be fully practical and patient oriented as well research aspect for the fututure prospective. Any research must be 100% supported by the govt. If you leave it the individual it will not work it out effectively. r

  2. user
    kuldip singh sodhi October 23, 2018, 7:57 pm

    MCI knows everything.But fails when inspects Medical Colleges of Political leaders.Helpless before political leaders.

  3. MCI has gone for good,because MCI never understood the ground realities & countries requirements.It was in its own confused ,autocratic state.Rules laid by MCI I feel have never gone well with ground realities.On the one hand there is a severe shortage of medical manpower in the country & MCI has never thought of amending its regulations to suit the countries needs.Like the teacher student ratio ,which has been changed by the government recently,should have been done long back.We could have had enough teachers if this was implemented 20 yrs back.It was the duty of the MCI to see every medical student will get a postgraduate seat of his choice as the country requires a lot of postgraduates.MCI has failed miserably by not recognising the need & wasted many bright students career by denying the seats because of some foolish requirements ( many times shortage of some stupid machine which no body uses has been the reason for cancelling recognition).Knowing pretty well there is a shortage of teaching staff from human resources reports , gave permission to new medical colleges,god only knows why & how the MCI expected the colleges to get teachers .Attending conferences has been made a requirement for re registration and in the era of internet and online resources conference attendance has been declining steadily & it is a total waste of time and money unless somebody want to relax.These are just a few examples.Hope the BOG will look into all the aspects and make medical education and practise better and free from unnecessary constraints ,keeping the countries needs in mind.

  4. I think MCI should have some control over pharmacy and govt has to make strict rules for over the counter drugs. Antibiotics, sedatives etc are just available on any fraud prescription. Only prescriptions having that unique registration number can give allopathic prescriptions must be soon established as antibiotics are becoming useless due to resistance because of our country

  5. its my request to mci members please do something for oci or overseas citijen students to make them eligibal for state quota or managment auota seats of all the states. as they are oci card holders but lots of students just born in abroad or different countries but spend therir life and studying in india . and if they pass out neet and if therir parents settled in india and dont have any nri account or they have income only in india as they are settled in india have very immposibal criteria like they still considered as nri and have to pay only from nri account. and how it can be possibal in indian settled oci card holder family.please consider this too.