Before explaining NMC, I would like to brief about existing MCI.The Medical Council of India (MCI) is a statutory body for establishing uniform and high standards of medical education in India. The Council grants recognition of medical qualifications gives accreditation to medical schools, grants registration to medical practitioners, and monitors medical practice in India.
The main functions of the Medical Council of India are as follows:
1.Establishment and maintenance of uniform standards for undergraduate medical education.
2.Regulation of postgraduate medical education in medical colleges accredited by it. (The National Board of Examinations is another statutory body for postgraduate medical education in India).
3.Recognition of medical qualifications granted by medical institutions in India.
4.Recognition of foreign medical qualifications in India.
5.Accreditation of medical colleges.
6.Registration of doctors with recognized medical qualifications.
7.Keeping a directory of all registered doctors (called the Indian Medical Register).
8.Registration of doctors and their qualifications is usually done by state medical councils.
Now, NMC is “National Medical Commission” which is a body going to replace MCI(Medical Council of India) in upcoming years.
NMC Bill stands for “National Medical Commission Bill”
The NMC Bill seeks to replace the Medical Council of India (MCI) with a new body. It also proposes to allow practitioners of alternative medicines, such as homeopathy and Ayurveda, practice allopathy after completing a “bridge course”.
Here is what National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill is:
1) The bill seeks to replace the Medical Council of India with National Medical Commission as top regulator of medical education in India.
2) The bill also seeks to put in place a common entrance exam and licentiate exam, which all medical graduates will have to clear to get practicing licenses.
3) It would also put in place a four-tier structure for the regulation of medical education. The 20 members National Medical Commission will be at the top of this structure.
4) NMC will be a 20 member body comprising a Chairperson, a member secretary, eight ex-officio members, and 10 part-time members.
5) Out of the 8 ex-officio members, four shall be presidents of the boards constituted under the act and remaining four shall be nominees from three ministries viz. Health, Pharmaceuticals, HRD and one from Director General of Health Services.
6) The bill also has a provision for a common entrance exam and licentiate (exit) exam that medical graduates have to pass before practicing or pursuing PG courses. For MBBS, students have to clear NEET, and before they step into practice, they must pass the exit exam.
7) The NMC can permit a medical professional to perform surgery or practice medicine without qualifying the National Licentiate Examination, in circumstances that may be specified in regulations.
8) According to the NMC Bill, the Ethics and Medical Registration Board can maintain a separate national register that would have the names of licensed AYUSH practitioners. The names of graduates of Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery and Bachelor of Homeopathic Medicine and Surgery are already registered with their respective councils and on taking the bridge course they would be incorporated in a separate register maintained by the NMC, resulting in dual registration with two councils, which is neither open nor permissible.
9) The government, under the National Medical Commission (NMC), can dictate guidelines for fees up to 40% of seats in private medical colleges. This is aimed at giving students relief from the exorbitant fees charged by these colleges and is a standout feature of the bill.