Kerala: Medical Council calls for compulsory registration of PG Medical students, faces objection
Thiruvananthapuram: The Travancore Cochin Medical Council (TCMC) recently mandated obtaining a permanent registration with the state medical Council for all the medical students, who have secured admission for PG Medical studies including Diplomate of National Board (DNB) courses in any institution in Kerala. The move has met flak from many in the medical fraternity who have questioned the move of TCMC asking doctors to register with specifically the state council in Kerala when as per regulations, registration with any state medical council is enough for pursing PG Medical education.
As pointed out by TCMC in its recent circular, the move comes in view of the violation of the Postgraduate Medical Education Regulations, 2000 of the Medical Council of India and the Travancore-Cochin Medical Practitioners Act, 1953, . The Council stated that most medical students at present are seeking registration with the TCMC after completing their PG course.
" It has come to the notice of this Council that many of the medical institution falling under the purview of the Indian Medical Council Act 1956 and students who are getting Post Graduate admission including DNB, in any of these institutions in Kerala do not adhere to the stipulations as provided under regulation 8 (3) of Postgraduate Medical Education Regulations, 2000," the circular read.
As per Section 8(3) of the Postgraduate Medical Education Regulations, 2000, "every student selected for admission to PG medical course in any of the medical institutions… should have obtained permanent registration with the MCI or any of the State medical councils… within a period of one month from the date of admission…"
The notice further added, " Apart from most of the students who are approaching the council for registration after completion of their course is in gross violation of these said regulations and also the TCMP Act, 1953. This cannot be allowed. In case of such violations comes to the notice, necessary legal proceedings will be intimidated against those persons who are responsible for it."
However, objections have been raised that the TCMC is misquoting or misinterpreting the Postgraduate Medical Education Regulations, 2000, which states that registration with any State medical council will suffice for students seeking admission to PG medical courses. Doctors have pointed out that regulations clearly imply that for pursuing PG Medical Courses, registration with ANY state medical council is enough and it does not have to necessarily be with the Kerala Medical Council.
A physical and public health activist, K V Babu told the Medical Dialogues team that as the statutory body in the State in charge of maintaining uniform standards of medical education and the ethics of medical practice, the TCMC should not be misquoting or misinterpreting existing regulations. He sought to withdraw the circular issued on 18th November 2020, adding that the circular quoting PG Medical Education Regulations 2000, 8(3) is factually incorrect.
He pointed out that when the PG Medical Education Regulations clearly state that registration with any State medical council is enough for students seeking PG medical studies, the TCMC is creating unnecessary issues by insisting that all students seeking PG medical studies in Kerala should get registered with the TCMC.
There are several students from other States who come to Kerala for PG studies and while they would have registered at their respective State medical council, the TCMC's insistence that they should again seek permanent registration with the TCMC is vexatious, he added.
However, refuting the same, the Registrar of the TCMC A. Muhammed Hussain claimed that the State medical council should have regulatory powers over anyone practicing medicine or PG studies in the State. In the event of any complaint or for the students to be issued a certificate of good standing, registration with the TCMC is a must.
"The State law says that anyone practicing medicine here should seek registration from the State medical council. PG medical training should be considered as medical practice itself as these students would be fully engaged in the treatment of patients here. Hence, the TCMC is particular that any student of modern medicine seeking PG studies in Kerala should be registered under the State medical council," Hussain told the hindu.