Can Medical Msc sign Lab Reports? MCI BOG gives its decision
New Delhi: Taking its call on who can sign laboratory reports, the apex medical regulator, Medical Council of India Board of Govenors (MCI BOG) has yet again taken a decision that is going to have an impact the future of thousands of medical Msc as well as PhD candidates across the country In its letter written to the Secretary Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Secretary Medical...
New Delhi: Taking its call on who can sign laboratory reports, the apex medical regulator, Medical Council of India Board of Govenors (MCI BOG) has yet again taken a decision that is going to have an impact the future of thousands of medical Msc as well as PhD candidates across the country
In its letter written to the Secretary Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Secretary Medical Council Of India has specified the conditions under which Medical Msc sign laboratory reports
The matter has been brewing ever since the Supreme Court gave its decision that only MBBS with PG Pathology are allowed to sign laboratory reports
The MCI, in its clarification extended the decision to MBBS plus PG in Microbiology, Biochemistry and so on, where by it stated
it has to be borne in mind that, the Registered Medical Practitioner shall sign / counter sign the Laboratory Reports in their respective field of specialization / subject. That is to say that a Pathologist shall sign / countersign a Pathological Report, a Microbiologist shall sign / countersign a Microbiological Report and a Biochemist shall sign / countersign a Biochemical Report, so on and so forth.
With the decision, thousands of Medical Msc and PhD, who while having a scientific background, did not satisfy the pre-requisite of being Registered Medical Practitioner as they did not possess an MBBS degree were left in lurch. The matter of their standing as well as whether they can sign laboratory reports was taken up by the MCI BOG and the decision was recently communicated to the health ministry.
In his letter, the MCI secretary informed Health Ministry that the the matter relating to Signing and clinical interpretation of Laboratory Reports was considered by the Board of Governors in super session of Medical Council of India in their meeting, held on 06.01.2020 and it was decided as under:-
" The Board of Governors are of the considered view that, persons possessing qualifications of M.Sc. in Medical Microbiology/Medical Biochemistry and Ph.D in relevant subjects such as Biochemistry, .Microbiology, Biotechnology and Genetics etc., form qualified human resources in these fields who are equipped with the knowledge of performing the laboratory test in their respective branches. However, such person not having qualifications in modern medicine, are as such are not equipped with knowledge of interpreting the laboratory reports for clinical diagnosis, Therefore, while such persons are not competent to offer a medical opinion, at the same time they are not prohibited from conducting relevant test and reporting the result of tests conducted by them.
The BoG considered the matter at length, and expressed the following view on the issue:
" A technical report stating test result without recording any medical opinion thereon can be signed by a qualified person with an M.Sc. in Medical Biochemistry/Medical microbiology or with Ph.D. degree in relevant subject such as Biochemistry , Microbiology, Biotechnology and Genetics etc..Further all test reports generated by such persons must necessarily bear a disclaimer to the effect that the reports are strictly for the use of medical practitioners are not medical diagnosis(s) as such.
Medical laboratory reports which contain medical diagnosis(s) and/or a medical opinion on the basis of the test results are to signed by medically qualified professionals only having qualification duly registered as per IMC Act"