NMC Specifies Role of Institutes to ensure Optimal Functioning of Medical Teachers

Published On 2023-05-16 07:15 GMT   |   Update On 2023-05-16 12:14 GMT

New Delhi: In the recently released guidelines on "Professional Responsibilities of Medical Teachers", the National Medical Commission (NMC) has specified about the support framework to ensure the optimal functioning of medical teachers and especially the role of the medical institutes in this context.

The Ethics and Medical Registration Board (EMRB) of the Commission has clarified that the Institutions and departments also have an important functioning in enabling teachers to conduct their roles responsibly and ethically.


One of the responsibilities that the Institutes should fulfill is recruiting competent teachers through an "open and transparent process at various designations, keeping in mind the guidelines of the NMC," specified the Commission.

The guidelines mentioned that at the time of selection, the institutes must locate certain qualities in a teacher including- their commitment to teaching and academics, adequate clinical knowledge and patient care skills, research aptitude focussing on number of publications and originality of thought and the impact of research to address the regional or national health issues. 

Apart from these, the teacher "Must have pleasing demeanour and neatly dressed," mentioned the NMC Guidelines.

Also Read: NMC releases Guidelines on Professional Responsibilities of Medical Teachers, details

Medical Dialogues had earlier reported that NMC in the guidelines has discussed about the personal attributes and conduct of teachers including several factors such as teacher as a role model, the teaching-learning process, and assessment and examination process. Apart from this, NMC has also discussed the teacher-student interactions, bedside teaching, responsibilities of teachers to their colleagues, and responsibilities of teachers to the community.

The guidelines have also discussed the role of teacher as a researcher and a voice of science- including the responsibilities of teachers in the conduct of research. NMC has also specified the support framework to ensure optimal functioning of medical teachers at both National and Institutional level.

While specifying the role of institutes and departments to enable teachers conduct their roles responsibly and ethically, NMC mentioned that the institutes need to fulfill all the mandatory requirements in terms of infrastructure and equipment to optimally support the teaching-learning process.

Another responsibility of the institute is to "Conduct evaluations of teachers and provide feedback with the aim of helping teachers improve their own functioning and the teaching-learning process in general."

Apart from this, the institutes should ensure fair pay for work done, leave, and other benefits in accordance with the provisions of appropriate laws/rules. The colleges should also ensure transparent and open processes for promotion while fulfilling the minimum requirements outlined by the NMC, and they should also support professional development programmes so that teachers can update /upgrade their knowledge and skills, mentioned the Guidelines.

NMC Ethics Board has also suggested the institutes to create an enabling environment that supports optimal learning and research with respect to the academic independence of investigators while providing institutional support for administrative matters and financial review.

Institutes have also been suggested to create a grievance cell addressing the issue of workplace harassment, set up an academic council of teachers across all disciplines which formulates institutional policy regarding medical education in keeping with NMC guidelines and develops and approves the institutional teaching-learning programmes. These meetings should be held regularly, and minutes recorded, the Guidelines mentioned.

The Commission has also asked the institutes to create a medical education unit/department and ensure that members have adequate training to facilitate institutional teaching-learning processes.

Apart from this, the institutes have been asked to ensure 360-degree evaluation of teachers by students, colleagues, seniors, and juniors and advised the medical education unit to be empowered to operationalize this evaluation.

The Guidelines further asked the colleges to set up Institutional Ethics Committees for human and animal research in accordance with national guidelines, protect whistle-blowers who highlight unethical practices of teachers in education, clinical practice and research and follow-up on appropriate action, ensure support to universities through teacher participation in university activities including the conduct of examinations.

"Efforts should be made to anonymise the students during assessment/ examination process," NMC mentioned.

"Reasons for refusal to participate in the examination process should be evaluated by the university and frivolous excuses should be dealt with appropriate action," the Guidelines further stated.

Listing down what the Institutes should not do, NMC mentioned that the colleges should not falsify institutional information during inspection and accreditation processes, Pressurise teachers to falsify information for the purposes of accreditation, and apply pressure on teachers to show preference to individual candidates in the award of marks or any other favour/consideration.

National Level:

Apart from specifying the role of institutes, the guidelines have also mentioned the role of NMC at the National Level. The guidelines mentioned that at the national level, the National Medical Commission has the role to ensure that medical teachers are provided the necessary guidelines for their optimal functioning.

The NMC also contributes to skill development, monitoring and amendment of medical curriculum to suit the needs of the country and society. The NMC invites feedback to improve the medical training and teachers’ development in the country.

According to the Guidelines, few of the continued programs at the national level should include- Strengthening Faculty Development Programmes, Monitor quality of teaching by random monitoring, and Quality improvement project for improvement of teachinEnsureg activities to make teachers more efficient.

However, releasing the guidelines, the apex commission has clarified that "The intention behind these Guidelines is not to penalize or point a finger at any teacher but to remind him/her of the professional role of a medical teacher in the training of medical students & other healthcare professionals and in life of students and the nation. The hope is that they will introspect in light of these guidelines and improve the quality of teaching and reduce gaps in learning in light of expectations of students and society."

Also Read: NMC Guidelines: Senior faculty must mentor junior faculty


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