The IMA protested the introduction of a new council which would interfere in the medical system.

National Medical Council Bill will impact patients Doctors go on nationwide strike Image for representation.
news Strike Sunday, July 29, 2018 - 19:08

Doctors nationwide on Saturday took part in a nationwide strike as part of the Indian Medical Association’s protest against the introduction of a new National Medical Council Bill 2017. As a result, the strike rendered all outpatient clinic services non-functional for a full 12 hours.

“The new bill, the National Medical Council (NMC) will replace the already functional Medical Council of India (MCI). It doesn’t make sense to do this. The NMC will also be more focused on other aspects of the medical infrastructure and will not take into consideration the negative impact it will have on people,” said IMA Secretary, Karnataka, Dr B Veeranna.

While most outpatient facilities remained shut throughout the country, emergency room services and inpatient wards ran as per the norm.

The ‘Dhikkar Diwas - no to NMC Bill’ protests were started to oppose the legislation which aims to replace the MCI, which has been in function for over 80 years.

“We did not face any issues during the OPD shutdown, patients were redirected to the emergency rooms and others were instructed to return on Monday depending on their condition,” says Dr Swathi, a general physician from Bengaluru.

Reports, however, of a one-day old baby dying in Karnataka’s Gokak after allegedly being turned away from a private hospital emerged. IMA Karnataka President Dr HN Ravindra stated that they were unaware of the facts surrounding the situation and has called for an inquiry into the same. He further clarified that all emergency services were told to remain functional.

Doctors allege that the NMC would not only replace the MCI, but that it would interfere massively with the medical education infrastructure currently in place.

“We will only know the outcomes after the legislation tomorrow (Monday), depending on whether the bill is passed or not only will we be able to decide what to do going forward,” added Dr Veeranna.