Protesting against the draft National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill, which seeks to replace the Medical Council of India (MCI) with a new body, the Nalgonda chapter of the Indian Medical Association in solidarity with the medical fraternity went on a 12-hour strike here on Tuesday.
Sporting black badges, nearly 120 doctors from private and government healthcare institutions shut their clinics for all out-patient services starting 6 a.m.
Post noon, however, they resumed duty following reports that the Bill was sent to Parliamentary Standing Committee “taking into consideration their demands”.
The MCI, so far, has been the agency defining various standards for medical qualification, and education in the country. But with NMC Bill, medical education and patient services in the country will no longer remain within common man’s reach, they argued.
Terming the Bill “anti-poor and undemocratic”, Nalgonda chapter president Vasantha Kumari said, “The proposed one-year bridge course in the Bill enables an AYUSH doctor or a dentist to practice modern medicine, which they are not trained for.”
When it comes to medical education, the Bill intervenes by arbitrarily proposing allocation of seats percentage-wise, which rejects the poor seeking medical education, she said.
Another member felt the medical body, with the coming of NMC, will go directly into the hands of politicians and corporates. Members ran a Whatsapp campaign centered on seven effects of the Bill, and asserted “a medical Bill without concurrence of medical professionals will be a disaster”.