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Medical council warning in Tamil Nadu: Doctors not to issue life certificates without knowing someone personally
Chennai: Issuing a warning to the doctors, the Tamil Nadu Medical Council (TNMC) has mentioned in a recent advisory that the medical practitioners shouldn't issue Life certificates to an unknown person. The council referred to the fact that fake life certificates are used for committing common crimes including registration of properties and advised that only if a person is...
Chennai: Issuing a warning to the doctors, the Tamil Nadu Medical Council (TNMC) has mentioned in a recent advisory that the medical practitioners shouldn't issue Life certificates to an unknown person.
The council referred to the fact that fake life certificates are used for committing common crimes including registration of properties and advised that only if a person is personally known to the doctor, then Life Certificate can be issued using Identification marks/Signatures/LTI of the person and affix passport size photograph with signature.
Pointing out that Life Certificate is an Identity Certificate to confirm if the person is alive (for pensioners and registration purposes, etc.) the Council has warned the doctors how on many occasions impersonators walk in with fake IDs. Referring to this, the Council has issued the following directions to the doctors before issuing Life Certificates-
1. The purpose of issuing the certificate is to know the said person is alive. (Registration department and for pensioners)
2. This is NOT a medical certificate.
3. This certificate has to be issued by a Gazetted Officer if the Certifying Officer personally knows the person.
4. If the person is personally known, then the Life Certificate can be issued, consisting of Identification marks/ Signature / LTI of the person and affix passport size photograph with signature.
5. Caution: On many occasions, an impersonator fixes his own photo with the name of a dead person or another live person and walks in with fake IDs. He forges the signatures and gets the Certificate.
6. This shall not be issued to unknown persons brought by known persons like relatives and friends – with or without IDs.
7. Common crimes occur in those claiming for registration of properties.
"Hence RMPs are advised not to issue Life Certificates to an unknown person. (as for Conduct certificate),"Council mentioned in its advisory.
Such an advisory comes from the Tamil Nadu Medical Council only a few days after the Council had suspended two doctors for issuing fake medical certificates to patients who were dead already.
Also Read:Tamil Nadu Medical Council suspends 2 doctors
Medical Dialogues had earlier reported that one of those two doctors was serving as an Assistant Surgeon with the Royapettah Government Hospital, Chennai, and now is employed as an Assistant Professor at Government Medical College Hospital, Vellore, whereas the other doctor runs a private clinic in Hosur.
In the case of the Assistant Surgeon, back on January 10, 2018, she had issued the life certificate of a man who had committed suicide in July 2015. The issue came to light when the wife of the dead person lodged a complaint with the medical council of Tamil Nadu that the property in his name was sold by his relatives two days after the Government doctor issued a "life certificate" for her husband. While his wife was the legal heir, the property was sold by his relatives using the "fake" certificate.
In the other case, a person hailing from Bangalore filed a complaint with the medical council of Tamil Nadu that a doctor who owns a private clinic in Hosur, conspired with one person and issued "life certificates" to two women, a year after the Bruthat Bengaluru Mahanagare Palike (BBMP) issued their death certificates.
While one of those two women passed away on October 16, 2019, her mother died on July 18, 2020. However, according to the complainant, the accused doctor allegedly issued their "life certificates" on September 7, 2020. The complainant, in the petition, said that the certificates were used for the registration of documents based on a power of attorney.
Acting on the complaints, the council conducted a probe into the matter and it came to be noted that in the case of the Assistant Professor, the doctor had issued the life certificate in the name of another person after the doctor's father-in-law asked for the same and assured that the person in whose name the certificate was issued, was fine.
The private practitioner, on the other hand, had claimed before the Council that those persons were wearing masks and standing at about 6 feet behind a plastic sheet during rush hours and in spite of his sincere verification with Aadhar Card he could not find any difference with the facial and physical identities and therefore he issued the certificates.
Holding both the doctors guilty, the council barred the Assistant Professor's name from the medical register for a period of two years, and suspended the private practitioner for three months.
Interestingly, soon after these judgments were made, the Council issued the latest advisory asking the medical practitioners not to issue life certificates to a person without knowing him or her personally.
Also Read:2 Doctors face Medical Council Inquiry for allegedly issuing fake life certificates to dead persons
Barsha completed her MA from the University of Burdwan, West Bengal in 2018. Having a knack for Journalism she joined Medical Dialogues back in 2020. She mainly covers news about medico legal cases, NMC/DCI updates, medical education issues including the latest updates about medical and dental colleges in India. She can be contacted at email@example.com.