A group of ministers (GoM) constituted under Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to look into issues relating to the draft National Medical Commission Bill, 2016, will be meeting for the second time on June 13. The Bill, which seeks to replace the Medical Council of India (MCI) with a new commission to steer medical education in the country, had met last month. In March, the government had formed the GoM to address the concerns over membership issues raised by a few states and doctors. The draft Bill will be placed before the Cabinet after the GoM submits its report, a senior government official said.
Last year, a high-level committee headed by Niti Aayog Vice-Chairman Arvind Panagariya was set up to examine the issue of poor regulation of medical education by MCI and proposed replacing it with a new commission. Besides Panagariya, the panel included Prime Minister’s Additional Principal Secretary P K Mishra, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant and Union Health Secretary. After approval, the National Medical Commission will become the main regulatory body and take over all roles and responsibilities of MCI.
The new body will have eminent doctors and experts on board to ensure quality is at par with global standards. Last year, a parliamentary committee had called for revamp of MCI, saying it had failed in its role as a regulator which has led to a deterioration in India’s medical education.