Bengaluru: In order to get recognition in the specialty that they have been practicing for more than past three decades, radiologists who are working successfully in private hospitals or running their own ultrasound scanning centers in the state, have been directed by the Medical Education Department to take examinations.
The pitiful situation is being faced by 62 radiologists, some of which include fetal medicine experts, who completed their two-year postgraduate Diploma in Radiology Diagnosis (DMRD) course from the government-run Vijayanagar Institute of Medical Sciences (VIMS) in Ballari in the year 1982, reports TOI. Even after 36 years, the qualification still awaits MCI recognition
Despite their studies, these specialists are not more than MBBS doctors, as they are holding unrecognized DMRD degrees. The reason cited for the course not being approved by the Medical Council of India (MCI), is the lack of sufficient staff in the medical college. Ironically, based on their scores in MBBS, these doctors were allotted seats by the government, adds the daily.
Speaking to TOI, one of the radiologists, who does no less than 800 scans a month said, “The DMRD course has not been recognised by MCI so far. Hence, the qualification has not been incorporated in the Karnataka Medical Council (KMC) registration certificate. According to KMC, we are just MBBS doctors.”
Meanwhile, the doctors, who have been taking this issue up with the government for over almost over a decade now, questioned the government’s move to continue to admit students to the course every year even when MCI consent is pending.
“If the government is sure of getting MCI approval, why can’t we be exempted from writing the exam? Why can’t the government give us an undertaking in writing?” they asked.
In the search for a solution, the doctors recently met members of KMC. Sympathized, Dr H Veerabhadrappa, President, KMC, told the daily, “VIMS is an old institution. It’s strange that the course has not been approved by MCI, and it’s a wrong move by the government to allot seats to the course year after year. Going by the rulebook, we can’t add the DMRD qualification for these doctors in our records as the course doesn’t reflect in the MCI schedule. The candidates can either approach MCI or the court. We will write to VIMS to make efforts to get the course approved by MCI.”
Speaking on the issue, Director of medical education and vice-chancellor of Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences (RGUHS) S Sacchidananda stated, “These doctors have specialized in radiology and have also got the certificate from the college. They needn’t write the exam…We are trying to recruit permanent staff, including professor in radiology, in VIMS to get MCI approval.”
“It has been tough to hire radiologists for teaching in colleges, as they earn more in private practice,” he added.
Out of the 62, 45 specialists are now writing a competency-based assessment exam to be conducted by the medical education department for registered practitioners of ultrasound scanning as per Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) rules that prohibit sex selection.
Many of them are waiting for the MCI’s approval for the course, while few of them have decided to pursue MD Radiology, a three-year course.
The exam is held to recognize MBBS graduates trained in ultrasound scanning. The theoretical written exam is scheduled for July 5 and practical will be held from July 7 till July 13.