Hyderabad: With competition for jobs in the non-clinical sector of microbiology, biomedical and biochemistry taking centre stage, M.Sc graduates have alleged that they were being shunted out of a system they have been a part of since the last six decades. They have appealed to the Central government to amend the clinical establishment act.
The M.Sc graduates want their role in this sector as professors and managers of diagnostic laboratories to be recognised in the medical education system.
The Medical Council of India in their recent proposal to the central health ministry has stated that only medical graduates can sign the diagnostic certificates and only medical graduates can teach non-clinical subjects of microbiology, biomedical and biochemistry in medical colleges in the country.
President of National M.Sc Medical Teachers Association, Dr Sridhar Rao, explained, “The M.Sc graduates have been a part of the medical education system as the non-clinical learning is facilitated by them. The clinical learning and bedside practice is where the qualified and practicing doctors get involved. But introducing the body parts and its various functioning, explaining these factors is carried out by the M.Sc graduates. In one stroke, the MCI has sidelined our work of six decades. There existed an ambiguity in our role which had to be corrected and made all inclusive.”
The Medical Council of India in its argument has put forth that a qualified doctor is legally responsible for signing the report as they are responsible in interpreting it. This is because in the last ten years, post-graduate courses have been offered to MBBS students in non-clinical subjects of pathology and pharmacology which were not there earlier.
These doctors can now monitor and also interpret the laboratory reports that are acceptable to accredited hospitals. Indian Medical Association former president Dr K K Aggarwal explained, “The problem is due to some technicians signing the laboratory reports and that has led to a hue and cry. Diagnosis is an important part of clinical evaluation and there has to be a qualified authority to authenticate it. This diagnostic data is the basis of treatment and it is a priority for the doctor in patient treatment.”
But M.Sc graduates state that they are qualified to sign this as they are also learning the same medical course which is taught for post-graduate doctors in these non-clinical subjects.
Secretary of NMMTA, Arjun Maitra, explained, “The medical syllabus is the same for both a science graduate and an MBBS graduate for non-clinical subjects. This syllabus is taught in a medical college only. Where is the difference? There are lakhs of diagnostic laboratories across the country but not sufficient doctors to practice. Will they be able to meet the demand?”
To add to this is the Ayushman Bharat scheme where more diagnostic centres are going to be added in the semi-urban and rural areas and they will require well-trained and qualified manpower....