Indian Medical Association calls for 12-hour nationwide strike

IMA's countrywide protest: Medicos stage demo in Odisha capital

The Indian Medical Association has called off its pan Indian doctors' strike after the Medical Commission Bill was made a decision to be sent to a standing committee. The new National Commission Bill includes the bridge course proposal which would enable alternative medicine practitioners to practise allopathy from medical universities which is equal to MBBS course. "The IMA headquarter hereby declares closure of all routine services for 12 hours from 6am to 6pm across the country", newly-appointed IMA national president Dr Ravi Wankhedkar said.

Services at outpatient departments (OPDs) have been affected at major hospitals including SCB Medical College & Hospital in Cuttack, MKCG Medical College & Hospital in Berhampur and VIMSAR Medical College & Hospital in Burla due to the protest, which has begun at 6 AM this morning and will continue till 6 PM.

"We have been forced to protest as we have no other option", said Indian Medical Association official N Sulphi. 'No to NMC (National Medical Commission)' is a slogan for medical community as well as every patient.

A bill to replace the apex medical education regulator - Medical Council of India (MCI) with a new body, to ensure transparency, was introduced in the Lok Sabha on December 29.

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Tandon, meanwhile, said: "The government through this Bill, is trying to bring in two categories in medical education - the urban sector and the rural sector".

It further said that the penalty of Rs5 crore to Rs100 crore will also open the floodgates of corruption.

Dr Veeranna said the appointment of members to the commission is not by election, but rather by nomination by the Union government.

A medical advisory council, including one member representing each state and Union territory (vice-chancellors in both cases), the chairman, University Grants Commission, and the director of the National Accreditation and Assessment Council will make recommendations to the NMC.

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