Karela Fry

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Maharashtra continues downhill

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In recent years Maharashtra has fallen far from the pinnacle of progress which once made it the envy of other states. The slide has been most dangerous in the areas of education and health. Here is a comment on the latest bizarre development by Health India:

The Maharashtra state government today announced that non-allopathic doctors – the homeopaths, unani docs and ayurvedic doctors – will be allowed to practice allopathy or traditional medicine in the state. An ordinance will be issued in this respect next month. The alternative doctors will have to pass a one year course before they can practice though.

The members from the treasury and opposition benches raised the issue saying that this move could alleviate the woes of patients from rural areas. Medical education minister Vijaykumar Gavit announced in the state assembly on Friday that though the existing laws don’t allow such a practice, the state government wished to change the law. He said that the doctors, however, will have to complete a one-year course to practice other streams of medicine. “We want to amend Maharashtra Medical Practitioners Act, 1961, and an ordinance in that respect will be issued by the end of August. After that, doctors from homeopathy, unani and ayurveda would be able undergo a one-year course of pharmacology and start practicing allopathy from next year,” said Gavit.

We think this is a rather bizarre move by the ministry. The principles of allopathy, homeopathy, unani and ayurveda are all very different and to allow docs to practice streams different from their own could be downright dangerous. Doctors have to study for years before they reach the level of expertise that allows them to treat patients and a one year course can not give them that expertise. Also this move might see students who want to practice regular medicine but couldn’t get through medical school opt for alternative courses and then practice regular medicine.

TOI reports how the decision was framed to bypass normal checks and balances:

The minister said in a written reply that the decision to introduce the one-year pharmacology course was made on the advice of the attorney general, who suggested that it could be done by amending the Maharashtra Medical Practitioners Act, 1961. But when it was referred to the state law and judiciary department, it pointed out that a mere amendment to the Act will be of no use as under the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956, the assent of the Medical Council of India (MCI) is mandatory.

But a senior official told TOI that the government does not need an approval from the Medical Council of India to start a “certificate course” as the state has the requisite powers under the concurrent list. “Only a degree or a diploma course needs a mandatory approval from the MCI,” the official said.

A state which has stopped caring about education will continue to take the easy path downhill.


2 Responses

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  1. Appreciating the commitment you put into your blog and in depth
    information you offer. It’s awesome to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same out of date rehashed material. Wonderful read! I’ve saved your site and I’m including your RSS feeds to my Google account.

    Karnam Lodi

    July 16, 2012 at 3:45 am

    • Very kind of you. Thanks.

      Arhopala Bazaloides

      July 22, 2012 at 4:46 am

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