Amend the IMC Act to ensure professional autonomy, says IMA
Calls the National Medical Commission Act as undemocratic
New Delhi, 01 June 2017: Demanding professional autonomy for doctors, the IMA raised another boiling issue leading up to the nationwide Dilli Chalo movement that it is going to undertake on the 6th of June 2017. Dubbing the move to introduce NMA (National Medical Commission Act) as undemocratic, the IMA intensified its month-long campaign to highlight the problems faced by the medical fraternity today.
Demanding the protection of professional autonomy, the IMA feels that there is a need to amend the present IMC Act as opposed to the introduction of the NMA. The WMA (World Medical Association) has also supported the IMA on their stand.
Speaking about this, Padma Shri Awardee Dr K K Aggarwal, National President Indian Medical Association (IMA) and President Heart Care Foundation of India (HCFI) and Dr RN Tandon – Honorary Secretary General IMA in a joint statement, said, "Doctors are professionals and professional autonomy is their right. The autonomy of the medical profession is under threat throughout the world and what is happening in India can happen elsewhere too. It is imperative that physicians everywhere speak out against marginalization of the medical profession and in support of professional autonomy, as this is a prerequisite for high-quality patient care as well. The new Commission proposed by the government effectively means that non-doctors handpicked by the government will regulate the medical profession without any autonomy. This is unacceptable."
Currently, the MCI has 130 members, having a representative character with two-thirds elected and one-third nominated professional members representing the entire spectrum of professional stakeholders.
Adding further, Dr Aggarwal, said, "The proposed National Medical Commission will have 19 handpicked members nominated by the government. It will be a 100% nominated Commission with no representative character, mostly comprising non-doctors without any autonomy. This is not acceptable."
The Dilli Chalo march will be joined by over a lakh doctors in the country, both digitally and physically, and followed by deliberations on issues ailing the medical profession, one of them being the drug pricing policy. The IMA is also initiating a signature campaign on the issues at hand on social media and has urged all doctors to join and collect hundreds of thousands of signatures to demand justice from the government.