NMC’s Opaque Policy on Medical College Infrastructure of Disastrous Consequences


        Quality of medical education is a deciding factor for the kind of doctors and hence the character of the treatment that patients are going to get.  Transparency about the infrastructure and faculty of medical college are important and the deciding factors about the credibility of the institute. But the new opaqueness (by National Medical council- NMC) in the system displaying the critical details about medical colleges can have deleterious effects on medical education. The medical students are blind about the claims made by a medical college during inspection for recognition and permission to admit students, which may be not true. There have been many instances and several complaints of ghost faculty in private colleges and mass transfer of faculty during inspection from one government medical college to another.  Not only medical students pay millions to have a seat in private medical colleges, they invest their prime life time in studying medicine. Such opaqueness has a potential to ruin their careers. Medical students will have to work harder to get true information and more careful, about the institute they are getting into.  

NMC’s college infra reports not public, MCI notes taken down too

NMC’s college infra reports not public, MCI notes taken down too

      The National Medical Commission (NMC) does not post college infrastructure assessment reports on its website and has also removed all previous assessment reports posted by the erstwhile Medical Council of India (MCI). So, students or members of the public cannot know what claims were made by a medical college during inspection for recognition and permission to admit students. Why are these assessment reports important? The reports reveal the date of inspection, the names and designation of the inspectors, usually experienced medical faculty from government medical colleges, along with their comments and findings. They reveal what kind of infrastructure existed or was claimed, including inpatient and outpatient load, number of beds and facilities in the teaching hospital and in the college. They reveal the number of faculty shown as employed by the college department-wise. With about 50 new medical colleges opening in 2021, a record for a single year, and especially unusual since it was the peak pandemic year, there were several complaints of ghost faculty in private colleges and mass transfer of faculty during inspection from one government medical college to another. “Not uploading assessment reports shields such substandard colleges with inadequate faculty and infrastructure. They just want to claim more colleges have been opened and that more MBBS seats have been created. It is a numbers game, quality be damned. In the case of private colleges, getting approval without adequate infrastructure or faculty is a windfall as they charge exorbitant fees from students. Usually, approval is given for 100-150 seats. Even at Rs 15 lakh per annum as tuition fees, the college gets to collect Rs 15 crore to Rs 22.5 crore from the first batch,” said a retired professor of a government medical college. “The MCI, which was labelled corrupt and non-functional, used to post the reports of assessments of infrastructure and faculty done according to minimum standard requirements each year,” said Dr Mohammed Khader Meeran, an RTI activist. In response to Dr Meeran’s RTI application seeking college assessment reports of academic years 2020-21 and 2021-22, the NMC said that “the information sought is very voluminous and scattered in various files” and that “it would disproportionately divert the resource of MARB (Medical Assessment & Rating Board) of NMC”.

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Ayurvedic Surgery: 10 Technical Questions? About safety concerns


      If there are certain doubts about the safety of the patient, the apprehension needs to be addressed.

      The government has issued a notification which authorises post-graduate practitioners in specified streams of Ayurveda to be trained to perform surgical procedures such as excisions of benign tumours, amputation of gangrene, nasal and cataract surgeries.

    The notification by the Central Council of Indian Medicine, a statutory body under the AYUSH Ministry to regulate the Indian systems of medicine, listed 39 general surgery procedures and around 19 procedures involving the eye, ear, nose and throat by amending the Indian Medicine Central Council (Post Graduate Ayurveda Education) Regulations, 2016.

     Any  Surgery, how-so-ever simple it may look to the people sitting on fence, carries some  risk and needs  some kind of precautions and regulations to make it risk free.  Therefore if there are certain doubts about the safety of the patient, the apprehension needs to be addressed. If the service of surgery by Ayurveda surgeon has to be availed by public, a certain confidence needs to be generated about the safety and quality assurance. Mere push by an enforced law will not lead to genesis of trust and confidence. So there needs to be technical analysis of some kind, whether  it is a genuine original  strategy or merely  an imposed law.

     If it was an accepted practice till now, there was no need for such notification. So apparently,  if the need was felt  to be said in a forceful manner, there has to be something unusual about the practice.

      No doubt, ancient Ayurvedic text referred to surgical practices. But  in present era of consumerism, patients need to know, how it was being practiced for last 200 to 300 years. What are the results and data about complications.

  There are two main categories for the purpose of discussion.

A. Existence of a robust system

B. Individual competencies.

    Firstly, there should be basic robust system  that will generate Ayurvedic surgeons.

To start with, the  CCIM need to  satisfy on following questions. Following are the basic requirements of surgery.

1. What  kind of Anaesthesia  will be used in surgeries by Ayurveda surgeons? Who will be the anaesthesiologist?

2. What are post op pain killers be used in surgeries by Ayurveda surgeons?

3. What antibiotics  will be  used;. Allopathic or ayurvedic?

4. What are principles of pre-op evaluation?

5. How surgical techniques are different. Are they same used in allopathic surgery or different ones described in Ayurveda?

6. How the post op complications are being managed. Is it by using allopathic medications and investigations?

7.  Data of surgeries done in last decade or two in all of  Ayurvedic medical colleges, especially those done by Ayurvedic surgeons.

8. Who is teaching Ayurveda doctors about the  surgeries? Are there ayurvedic teachers  or being taught by allopathic surgeons?

9. Will  the people in higher positions and government  officials be availing such facilities or it is only for the  poor people? 

10. Will the patients be given enough information or an informed consent about such Ayurvedic surgeons before  surgery?

         More than a law, the whole exercise   will require a trust building   in public  along with quality assurance and something unique to make such surgeries practically happen.

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