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Cracks in AIIMS RDA over calling off strike against NMC Bill

Cracks in AIIMS RDA over calling off strike against NMC Bill

New Delhi: Fissures seem to have appeared in the AIIMS Resident Doctors” Association (RMA) as some of its members sought its dissolution alleging that the movement against the NMC Bill was betrayed after the strike was called off prematurely.

However, the RDA denied that there were any differences among the members over calling off the strike following a meeting with Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan.

“All of you are aware that, unfortunately, the current RDA deliberately made efforts to weaken the movement and lied to all of us. They called a general body meeting at 10 am on August 4. They had already submitted the result of the general body meeting to the Health Ministry at 7 am and had agreed to call off the strike with no tangible results,” a group of resident doctors said in an open letter on Sunday.

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The doctors said the association’s action was a betrayal to the spirit of the body.

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They alleged that the AIIMS RDA leadership neither responded to messages nor answered the calls the entire day and just released a letter in the evening stating their support to call off the strike.

“We urge the general body to dissolve the current RDA in view of their betrayal to the resident fraternity and the national movement against NMC Bill,” the doctors said in the letter.

Denying reports of fissures within the association, Dr. Rajeev Ranjan, general secretary of AIIMS RDA, said the current RDA is strong and popular.

“We have been working sincerely in the better interest of resident doctors of AIIMS and patients, and will keep working under the banner of AIIMS RDA,” he said.

Resident doctors of AIIMS called off their strike and resumed duties on Sunday after the health minister assured them that their concerns over the NMC Bill will be duly addressed.

In a communique to the AIIMS director, the RDA said that during the meeting, the Union Minister assured them of addressing their concerns while drafting the regulations of the National Medical Commission (NMC).

The minister also told them that the representatives of the AIIMS RDA and students” union will be consulted while drafting the regulations of the commission.

The NMC bill provides for setting up of a National Medical Commission in place of the MCI for development and regulation of all aspects of medical education, profession and institutions. Doctors are demanding certain amendments in the bill.

According to them, if not amended, the bill will lead to the deterioration of medical education and the degradation of healthcare services.

The fraternity is opposing section 32(1), (2) and (3) of the bill saying it will encourage quackery by providing a license to practice modern medicine as community health providers for persons other than those possessing MBBS degrees.

The doctors say there was no clarity over the introduction of NEXT and scrapping the NEET-PG.

They are also opposing decreasing the percentage of seats under controlled fee structure in private medical colleges and deemed universities from 85 to 50 percent, reducing the representation of elected members from 75 percent in MCI to 20 percent in National Medical Commission and autonomous boards constituted there-under.

Read Also: Why is there NEXT, FEE regulation, Community Health Provider Clauses: Health Ministry releases Explanation on NMC Bill

Source: PTI
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