Key Points of the New National Medical Commission Bill You Need to Know

The bill was drafted by a four-member committee headed by the Niti Aayog vice-chairman and aims to reform the medical education sector, which has been under scrutiny for corruption and unethical practices.

 Vidya Raja

Vividly remember an incident from my days as a student, when we were all busy filling out admission forms for various colleges. An acquaintance of mine seemed very relaxed. When asked why he was so calm, he said, “I have already secured a medical seat.”

 To be frank, this acquaintance never seemed interested in academics and would almost always barely scrape through his exams. On what basis did he secure that medical seat? I wondered.

I realised later that money could buy a medical college admission, regardless of academic track record. This acquaintance went on to attain a degree in medicine and was eventually booked for negligence by a family who lost their relative under this doctor’s care and supervision.

Clearly, there is a lot of scope for reform.

To fix such issues, Minister of Health and Family Welfare JP Nadda introduced the National Medical Commission Bill on December 29, 2017, in the Lok Sabha.

The Bill was drafted by a four-member committee headed by the Niti Aayog vice-chairman and aims to reform the medical education sector, which has been under scrutiny for corruption and unethical practices.

 If passed, the Bill will repeal the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 and provide for a medical education system which ensures:

(i)            Availability of adequate and high-quality medical professionals

(ii)           Adoption of the latest medical research by medical professionals

(iii)          Periodic assessment of medical institutions

(iv)         An effective grievance redressal mechanism.

Here are some of the key features of the Bill:

  1. The Bill allows practitioners of Ayurveda and other traditional Indian systems of medicine the licence to prescribe allopathic drugs after they have passed a ‘bridge course.’
  2. A National Medical Commission (NMC) is to be set up within three years of the passage of the Bill. State governments will establish State Medical Councils at the state level. The NMC will consist of 25 members, appointed by the central government.
  3. Some of the functions of the NMC include –

                (i)  Framing policies for regulating medical institutions and medical professionals.

                (ii) Assessing the requirements of healthcare-related human resources and infrastructure.

              (iii)  Framing guidelines for the determination of fees for up to 40% of the seats in private medical institutions and deemed universities, which are regulated as per the Bill.

  1. The central government will constitute the Medical Advisory Council, which will be the primary platform through which the states/union territories can put forth their views and concerns before the NMC.
  2. There will be a uniform National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test for admission to undergraduate medical education in all-medical institutions regulated by the Bill.

      The NMC will specify the manner of conducting common counselling for admission in all such medical institutions.

  1. According to the Bill, the Ethics and Medical Registration (EMR) Board shall maintain a separate National Register – Including the names of licensed AYUSH practitioners. The names of BAMS (Bachelor of Ayurveda Medicine and Surgery) and BHMS (Bachelor of Homeopathic Medicine and Surgery) graduates are already registered with their respective councils.
  2. One of the clauses of the Bill calls for a joint sitting of the National Medical Commission, the Central Council of Homoeopathy, and the Central Council of Indian Medicine at least once a year “to enhance the interface between homoeopathy, Indian Systems of Medicine and modern systems of medicine”.

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        Some of the clauses in the Bill has led to widespread protests among the medical fraternity. While the need of the hour is to eliminate corruption in medical admissions, it is equally essential to restore and maintain the high standards of integrity that the medical science deserves.

India ranked 44th of 50 countries in intellectual property index

India’s rank jumped from 43rd of 45 economies a year ago; the country improved its performance in relative and absolute terms

                India has improved its performance both in relative and absolute terms in the latest edition of the the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Global Innovation Policy Center’s (GIPC) ‘International IP Index,’ which analyses the intellectual property (IP) climate in 50 world economies, including India. India ranked 44th of 50 economies – a jump from 43rd of 45 economies one year ago, according to the sixth edition of the Index.

                “For the first time, India has broken free of the bottom 10% of economies measured, and its score represents the largest percentage improvement of any country measured. This is further evidence of a country on the move,” said Patrick Kilbride, vice president of GIPC, in a statement. As against 25% (8.75 out of 35) of the possible total score in the fifth edition, India scored 30% (12.03 out of 40) in the sixth edition, representing the largest percentage improvement of any country measured, the GIPC said.

                The factors that helped India improve its score included passing guidelines to strengthen the patentability environment for technological innovations, improving the protection of well-known trademarks, as well as initiating IP awareness and coordination programs — thereby implementing some tenets of its 2016 National IPR Policy. “However, additional, meaningful reforms are still needed to incentivise domestic innovation, attract foreign investors, and improve access to innovation,” Mr. Kilbride said. The U.S. led the list with 37.98 points, followed by the U.K (37.97) and Sweden (37.03).

Facing the Challenges In Medical Education Today

In Order To Address The Urgent Need For A Robust Team Of Medical Practitioners, India’s Medical Educational System Needs A Serious Makeover.

Uttaraj Malhotra

A saying goes, “Good doctors understand responsibility better than privilege and practice accountability better than business.” We cannot think of having such a battery of doctors in the nation, if our education system is not adept to nurture such doctors. Sadly, the reality is just this. According to Deloitte 2015 study on medical tourism in India, there is a dearth of well qualified healthcare professionals in the country; one of the reasons for a high mortality rate in India.

                Also, many young medical professionals are refusing to move into villages and remote areas where medical facilities are needed. It is estimated that India’s has merely 0.7 doctors and 1.5 nurses per 1,000 people; dramatically lower to the WHO average of 2.5 doctors and nurses per 1,000 people.

At the root of it all

Currently, India’s 398 medical colleges have failed to look after the healthcare needs of 1.2 billion people of the country. We can blame it on the archaic medical educational system. There is also a need to nurture emotional intelligence in medical practitioners. Patients need more care and compassion than merely technical medical know-how. Most medical practitioners are forced into cramming knowledge, to perform academically well. Another roadblock is the dismissal state of internship assessment and regular curricula development. This is the reason behind an evident fissure between requirements and availability of doctors, especially in remote areas of India.

                There are also other factors affecting the quality of Indian medical practitioners. There is maldistribution of resources and unregulated growth in the private sector. Apart from this, faulty and disorganised admission procedures in private medical colleges (most of these are not recognised by any accredited agency) makes the educational journey questionable.

Fixing the problems

Undeniably, health of a medical industry defines the health and well-being of a country. For that, every honest youngster dreams to be a part of one of the top 10 best medical colleges in the country. The list includes All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi; Christian Medical College (CMC), Vellore; Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC), Pune; JIPMER College, Puducherry; Maulana Azad Medical College (MAMC), Delhi; Lady Hardinge Medical College (LHMC), Delhi; Madras Medical College, Chennai; Grant Medical College, Mumbai; Kasturba Medical College (KMC), Manipal and Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai. But for those who can’t make it to these, the only hope is the other private institutions. With selections based on a National Ability and Entrance Test, chances of securing a seat are bleak for the rest of the aspiring lot; and then curricula and governance at such colleges has also become questionable.

This means, a serious and significant alteration of the existing curricular at every level and for all medical institutions, whether well know or not. There is also a great need for less emphasis on the theory component and more on the practical usage of the same. Therefore, the medical educational system should cater to a horizontal and vertical integration of pre-clinical, para-clinical and clinical subjects that can assign more time to clinical teaching. With this will emerge a new generation of doctors that are more equipped with clinical competencies and a right attitude to serve the patient.

Problem solving- a mindset

There is another interesting way to ensure that medical practitioners are not merely churned out as better crammers. Indian medical practitioners must be proficient in problem solving. For this, some medical learning institutions like Yenepoya University have introduced a self learning and interactive E-learning platform, especially for MBBS and BDS courses. They use inbuilt software called the ‘YENGAGE’. Through an open forum, students get to be continuously evaluated on their understanding and practical application.

Progressive evaluation

In order to have a more robust workforce of Indian medical practitioners, there is an urgent need to revamp the existing evaluation system as well. There needs to be tectonic shift; from merely evaluating memory power to accessing objective application. The Art and Science colleges are now happy; making use of choice-based credit system and a continuous evaluation framework. The same can be applied for doctors and medical practitioners in the making.

 

NEET 2018 Exam Pattern 

MBBS and BDS Entrance Pattern

 

By Vidya Raja

The CBSE, organising body of NEET examination has released a notification regarding question paper that from 2018 onwards only one set of question paper would be set for the candidates taking the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test. Earlier it was in 10 Languages including Hindi and English. National Eligibility cum Entrance Test which is a national level medical examination of the country. From the year 2016 onwards, All India Pre Medical Test (AIPMT) exam has been replaced by NEET examination.                 NEET 2018 is the gateway to offer admissions to deserving applicants in MBBS and BDS courses at the best colleges in India. (National Eligibility cum Entrance Test) NEET is a gateway for admissions into medical and dental undergraduate courses offered by various government and private medical colleges of the country.

Some minor changes have been made in the pattern. After the release of official notice interested Applicants can apply for National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET 2018). The application process for NEET 2018 will end tentatively in the Second week of January. Candidates can fill the Registration Form only through online mode before the last date. For more details read the article mentioned below.

Students aspiring for NEET 2018 must start their preparations. The pattern of exams can be known from the following article. Also, candidates can solve sample papers to know the kind of paper it will be.

NEET 2018 Exam Pattern

The candidates are able to prepare well if they know about NEET 2018 exam pattern. The detailed NEET paper pattern 2018 is given below:

  • Number of Questions: Total 180 questions will be asked in the exam. The Paper will be divided into 4 sections. Candidates can solve any section based on their choice.
  • Exam Mode: The Exam for NEET 2018 will be conducted in offline mode only. (Pen and paper-based mode). The candidates are advised to have a practice solving the modal sample paper.
  • Subjects: Questions will be asked from four subjects which are Physics, Chemistry & Biology (Zoology & Botany).
  • Type of Question: The NEET 2018 Paper will consist of only objective type questions in which out of four options only one correct answer will be there.
  • Exam Duration: The duration of NEET 2018 Exam will be 3 hours and Candidates who have completed the exam before 3 hours can leave the exam centre by submitting the copy to the invigilator.
  • Language: NEET 2018 Question paper will be asked in 8 languages that are:

–              English

–              Hindi

–              Tamil

–              Assamese

–              Bengali

–              Gujarati

–              Marathi

–              Telugu

  • Marking Scheme: Four marks will be given for each correct answer (+4 Marks).
  • Negative Marking: One mark will be deducted for each wrong answer (-1 Mark).
  • Total Marks of Examination: The NEET 2018 Exam will be Total of 720 Marks (Each Section of equal marks i.e. 180 Marks).
  • Questions in different Sections: The division of Questions in four subjects i.e. Physics, Chemistry, Zoology and Botany is :

S.N.        Section Total No. of        Total Marks

Questions

  1. Physics 45 180
  2. Chemistry 45           180
  3. Zoology 45           180
  4. Botany 45           180
  5. Total 180         720

NEET 2018 Preparation Tips

  • Firstly, Applicants need to gather all the important details about the officially prescribed Syllabus for the Examination.
  • Candidates preparing for NEET 2018 should make a proper timetable for the preparations.
  • Consider the good preparation books and study materials.
  • Candidates should Practice regular mock test and try previous year question papers. the candidates will be able to increase their speed of giving the paper and also practice can be done by giving these papers.
  • Stay stress-free and healthy while preparing for the exams.
  • Finally, Don’t try to include new topics at the end of preparations for NEET 2018.

NEET Registered office

The Assistant Secretary (NEET)

Central Board of Secondary Education,

Shiksha Kendra 2, Community Centre,

Preet Vihar, Delhi- 110092

 
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Health ministry rankings help you choose a medical school abroad

Gauri Kohli

Those looking to study medicine abroad have their priorities cut out — apart from choosing a reputed institute, they have to factor in tuition fees, cost of living and the city or country they want to go to. To make their search easy, the ministry of health and family welfare has come up with a list of medical institutes they can apply to as degrees from these universities will hold value in India too. The institutes have been ranked on the basis of how students have performed in a screening test, the Foreign Medical Graduate Examination (FMGE) conducted by the National Board of Examinations (NBE). The FMGE is a licensure exam which screens out test-takers who do not have the aptitude for medicine and select those who are capable of boosting the country’s physician workforce with their knowledge and skills.

The list has around 286 institutions from 42 countries, including Russia, Ukraine, China, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Philippines, United Arab Emirates and Romania. NBE has ranked institutes on the basis of results of around 35,000 students who cleared their MBBS exams between 2012 and 2014. About 9,690 Indian students passed the screening test during this period with an overall pass percentage of about 27%. The maximum number of graduates, according to the ranking, were from China (11,825) with a pass percentage of 18.9%, followed by Russia (5,950) with a pass percentage of 18.4%, Ukraine (3,520) with a pass percentage of 19.1% and Nepal (3,163) with a pass percentage of 21.2%.

There are 16 colleges and universities from where Indian students have graduated in the NBE screening test with a pass percentage of 100%. Two colleges in China – Chenyang Medical College and College of the Left Side of China have a pass percentage of 100% Indians in the test. Russia’s Kyrgyz Russian Slavic University also has a pass percentage of 100% as has Ukraine’s VN Karazin Kharkiv National Medical University. Nepal’s Nobel Medical College has been ranked number one on the NBE list with a pass percentage of 32%. BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences is a close second with a pass percentage of 31%.

With increasing competition and fewer MBBS seats in India for lakhs of students who apply, many medical aspirants contemplate pursuing education abroad in countries such as China, Ukraine, Russia and the Philippines. Another reason for choosing these countries over others is the cheaper educational cost when compared to the more expensive countries like the US or UK.

Experts say the health ministry move will help students as well as the Indian medical fraternity. “Generally speaking, a ranking based on objectively structured criteria and defined weightage accruable thereto is definitely useful for a student to make an appropriate choice for seeking admission to a concerned college. An objectively-based categorisation is of definite use to the stakeholders,” says Dr Jayshree Mehta, president, Medical Council of India.

Dr Mehta says that the present scenario would be affected to the extent that the Indian students opting for foreign medical qualifications could make an ‘informed choice’ while selecting an institute. “This would be on the basis of specific quality information handily available to him so that the choice is not blind in nature but is based on subtle relevant information. However, the ranking would turn out to be of consequence and relevance provided it is made in an objective and definitive manner,” she adds.

Dr KK Aggarwal, honorary secretary general, Indian Medical Association, agrees. “We must remember that students make institutions and institutions do not make students. An institution like AIIMS has the best results because the best students go there. Through such a ranking, students can know the pass percentage of these institutions. China and Russia have the cheapest medical fee and that is why most students go there. This kind of ranking helps.”

How did Indians fare in FMGE?

The National Board of Examinations has ranked medical institutes based on the results of around 35,000 students obtaining MBBS degrees from select institutes between 2012 and 2014

–9,690 Indian students passed the screening test during 2012-2014 with an overall pass percentage of about 27%

–11,825 Students from 87 colleges in China appeared for the FMGE from 2012-2014 and 2,239 Indians passed

–5,950 Students from 34 colleges in Russia appeared for the FMGE and 1,094 Indians passed

–3,520 Students from 18 colleges in Ukraine appeared for the FMGE and 671 Indians passed

–3,163 Students from 14 colleges in Nepal appeared for the FMGE between 2012 and 2014.

MCI silent on medical college inspection fraud

Rema Nagarajan

In the world of private medical colleges and Medical Council of India’s inspection of these colleges, doctors who are assistant professors in one inspection can become resident doctors in the next. Despite this fraud being pointed out to the MCI, no action has been taken so far.

In a letter to MCI Chairman Dr Jayshree Mehta on November 26, 2015, Prof Raj Bahadur, vice chancellor of Baba Farid University of Health Sciences pointed out that three declaration forms of faculty approved by the MCI assessors in Maharishi Markandeshwar Medical College and Hospital, Kumarhatti, in Solan, Himachal Pradesh were found to be faulty. Prof Bahadur, who is a member of the ethics committee of the Punjab Medical Council, said that in a committee meeting, they found that Dr Dinesh Kumar and Dr Barinder Pal Singh who were shown as assistant professors in General Medicine at the medical college during the inspection on May 12, 2014, were shown as senior residents in the inspection on January 1, 2015. Again Dr Kulwant Singh, an assistant professor in General Medicine in the June 2013 inspection, became a senior resident in the 2015 inspection.
In his letter to the MCI, Prof Bahadur sought action. However, the MCI has not responded. There was no response from the MCI president to TOI’s queries on why the MCI assessors had missed such a glaring discrepancy and what MCI intended to do to ensure that such frauds could not be perpetrated in future.
Prof Bahadur in his letter raised questions about why the MCI assessors could not verify that the same candidates in two successive inspections were at a higher or lower designation. “The upper age limit for a senior resident is 35-40 years. These three doctors were 41, 44 and 56 years old. How come this did not alert the assessors? Either the assessors don’t know their job or they are dishonest. The forms are seconded by the head of the department, then by the principal and by the assessors. So every one of them had to be involved. It is a criminal offence of fraud and forging of documents. The MCI ought to have registered a criminal case against the college authorities or even the inspectors if their connivance is shown,” said Dr G S Grewal, PMC president.

“Since these doctors have committed that they have not filled their forms, it is surprising how the assessors have evaluated them on the day of the inspection without verifying whether the declaration form is filled by them or somebody else,” stated Prof Bahadur. He added that only three parties could be responsible for allowing this fraud — the candidate, the assessors or the institution. Interestingly, in the January 2015 inspection report, one of the comments by the assessors was that there was a shortage of about 3% in resident doctors.

The Maharishi Markandeshwar Medical College, which was started in 2013 with permission to take in 150 students, was earlier in the news for its ‘ghost faculty’ or doctors who were shown as full-time faculty and drawing full pay but who were actually working elsewhere and were visiting the college once in a week to 10 days. In this case too, no action has been taken by the MCI yet.

 

PERMANENT CURE FOR MEDICAL SECTORMCI-LL-Size

After the recent directive by Supreme Court the central government has accelerated the move to make a full proof mechanism to keep a vigil on doctors and the medical education. The Health Ministry says it would decide its future course of action after the committee headed by NITI Ayog vice chairman Arvind Panagariya submits its report. However, before this mechanism takes a shape the responsibility of ensuring quality in Medical Education is at Justice Lodha Committee. For the current academic session about 2400 medical seats in 24 colleges are waiting for clearance. According to the Health Ministry sources, the Panagariya committee has met many times on this issue. The three member committee was constituted on the initiate of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The high-powered committee has Niti Aayog vice-chairman Arvind Panagariya, PM’s additional principal secretary PK Mishra and Niti Aayog chief executive officer Amitabh Kant as members.

Sources said during a review meeting of the health sector in March this year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Health Ministry discussed the option of even scrapping the country’s apex medical education regulator, which has been shrouded in controversy in recent years. At the meeting it was pointed out that the MCI is one of the major stumbling blocks towards a faster expansion, especially when it comes to ensuring quality education. The development came after the Parliamentary Standing
Committee on health and family welfare too had called for a complete overhaul of the medical council as it has repeatedly failed in its mandate as a regulator of medical education and profession. In its report presented in Parliament last month, the panel has recommended that the Act under which the
council was established be scrapped and a new legislation be brought in Parliament “at the earliest”.
Sources said that at the PM’s meeting, the need for a major focus on increasing the availability of doctors and paramedical staff, especially in the poor per- forming states such as Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Odisha, was emphasised. At the same time, the government is acutely aware that drastic action through legislative amendments may not be easy given that the changes have to be ushered in via the legislative route and the government does not enjoy majority in Rajya Sabha. In recent years, the MCI has been involved in a series of controversies.

The parliamentary committee had also pointed to this and had said that it was shocked to find that compromised individuals have been able to make it to the medical council but the ministry of health and family welfare is not empowered to take action. It noted that the MCI president admitted that “corruption was there when there was sanctioning of medical colleges, or increasing or decreasing seats”. It was told that “private medical colleges arrange ghost faculty and patients during inspections by the MCI and no action is taken for the irregularity”. The Committee is also studying the Ranjit Raichaudhary Committee recommendations which has recommended the constitution of National Medical Commission and also four separate Boards under it. Meanwhile the Justice Lodha Committee is also going to start its work.

The NEET, however, is not the end of the road. The more effective antidote to the ills of corruption and the production of poorly trained or fake doctors is the exit examination.

Including in reserved seats, to the ranking obtained in the examination. The 2010 notification for the NEET was implemented only in May 2013, but was set aside by a three-judge bench of the Supreme Court on July 18, 2013. The NEET, however, continued to be held for the all-India seats and those states and private colleges that opted to use this list for their admissions. Sita Naik, former member of the board of governors of MCI and also member of Ranjit Roy Chaudhury Committee, argues that NEET is necessary for many reasons. “One, multiple examinations are often held on overlapping dates; there is rampant malpractice in admissions where merit is of little consequence; and the

‘SC decision on NEET is DISCRIMINATORY’
The RSS associated Shiksha Sanskriti Utthan Nyas termed the Supreme Court decision to conduct National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) as biased and discriminatory and urged the Prime Minister Narendra Modi to take right measures to protect the interests of the Indian
languages. In a letter addressed to the Prime Minister and also Health Minister JP Nadha, Nyas secretary Atul Kothari said the SC decision to initiate NEET from the year 2016 itself “appears hasty and arbitrary”. “The SC judgement dated April 28, 2016 to conduct NEET phase 1 on May 1, 2016 fails to consider the bias it created against students from regional medium and rural areas. It basically created a bar for students studied in regional language medium by compelling them to appear for entrance examination in either English or Hindi language. Thereby it ousts a large section of students from states like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and West Bengal,” the letter said. Shri Kothari said most of the countries across the globe are now providing education in Health and Engineering courses in their mother tongue and it is time that Indian government also initiates the education of these courses in Indian languages.
“The Union Public Service Commission holds the Civil Services Examination in Indian languages, on the same grounds provisions should be made to conduct the NEET examination in Indian languages,” the letter said.

The other kind of discrimination that this decision has created is with respect to syllabus of the examination. The NEET is to be conducted by CBSE based on CBSE Board’s 12th Standard syllabus. “This fails to take into account that there is a huge difference in terms of content in the state and central board’s syllabus. This judgement renders the students from various state boards helpless and un-prepared for the NEET exam. It robs them of an equal opportunity, which the constitution of India
provides them with. Therefore, we request you to take up the issue with the Supreme Court & file a review petition against this judgement so as to provide an equal opportunity to the lakhs of regional medium students across India,” Shri Kothari said in the letter.

abysmally poor standards of knowledge, particularly in science subjects, are largely reflective of the poor standards of the high school education system in the country. Medical profession deals with
human lives and is dependent on the knowledge and basic competencies of the doctor. It is important that standards are not diluted for any reasons. Instead, the focus of governments should be towards
improving the standards of science education in high schools. The NEET will compel governments to focus on high school education,” she opines.

The NEET, however, is not the end of the road. The more effective antidote to the ills of corruption and the production of poorly trained or fake doctors is the exit examination. Based on an MCI recommendation, in 2010, a ministerial decision was taken to conduct a common national exit examination. This was to ensure that a doctor, irrespective of the institution trained in, had the basic
skills and competencies as per laid down standards. Further, this test was to be made mandatory for those desirous of getting the MCI license to practice
anywhere in the country or go abroad.

Those not willing to take the test were, in the interim, to be left to practice only in their states. The time has come to revive the proposal. The wide variation in standards, for instance, between a graduate from the AIIMS or Christian Medical College, Vellore, and an Azamgarh medical college is
unacceptable. A common exit exam will compel “bogus” medical colleges to provide quality training or face the prospect of being rejected by prospective students. The MCI is an anachronism and its reform has been long-drawn and tortuous. The Health Ministry overlooked the recommendations made by several expert committees to arrest declining standards and the massive corruption that had crept into the system. In 2010, pushed by the PMO, a draft bill revamping the MCI and replacing it with the
National Commission for Human Resources for Health (NCHRH) was tabled in the Rajya Sabha. In
October 2012, this was returned to the Ministry with three concerns to be examined: One, the autonomy of states and potential violation of federal principles; two, excessive bureaucratisation and centralisation; and three, faulty selection procedure of regulators, providing scope for abuse.

The Ministry lapsed into inaction and as per a PIL, a fraudulently elected MCI was restored in November 2013. In 2014, at the instance of Dr Harsh Vardhan, the then Minister of Health, the Ranjit
Roy Chaudhury Committee was constituted. The Committee submitted its report in September
2014, reiterating in large measure the recommendations of the NCHRH Bill. But no action was taken. It is to the credit of the parliamentary standing committee (PSC) that it took suo moto cognizance of the Roy Chaudhury Committee Report and tabled its findings in Parliament on March 8, 2016. The PSC report indicted the MCI providing adequate justification to set it aside. Instead, a three-person committee has been constituted to recommend policy options for revamping the MCI. Many of us were dismayed at the missed opportunity and felt anxious that the “invincible” influence of certain individuals who dominate the MCI does not once again thwart the reform process. The health sector in India has failed to develop to its full potential on account of the corrupt and incompetent MCI. The MCI has done nothing regarding reforms of curriculum, quality assurance, ethical practice, rational treatment, and humane patient care. By overhauling this institution with mappropriate expertise as required to govern this sector, India can expect a great leap forward on health outcomes. Demands by parliamentarians to defer implementation by a year and claims that NEET undermines the special status of J&K needn’t be encouraged. A national eligibility and entrance test is a good step that will
improve the quality of medical education.

3-MEMBER COMMITTEE TO OVERSEE MCI FUNCTIONING
The Supreme Court in May constituted a three-member committee comprising of Justice
RM Lodha (former Chief Justice of India), Dr Shiv Kumar Sarin (former Chairman of the Medical Council of India) and Vinod Rai (former Comptroller and Auditor General of India) to oversee the
functioning of the MCI till the Parliament enacts a new law replacing rhe Medical Councilm Act, 1956 governing the regulator. The court directed the Centre to issue a notification constituting the panel, giving them a free hand to even override decisions taken by the MCI. “The said Committee will have the authority to oversee all statutory functions under the MCI Act. All policy decisions of the MCI will require approval of the Oversight Committee. The Committee will be free to issue remedial
directions,” said a five-judge mConstitution Bench of Justices AR Dave, AK Sikri, RK Agrawal,
Adarsh K Goel and R Banumathi