Why is there such a shock if the list of surgeries that a Shalya Chikitsak can do has been notified. What did we think was the full form of BAMS ; It is Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and SURGERY. If an Ayurved graduate is trained & qualified in surgery then a MS (Ayurveda) Shalya Chikitsak which is a postgraduate qualification in surgery should obviously be more qualified to do surgery. The Practitioners of Indian Medicine (Standards of Professional Conduct, Etiquette and Code of Ethics) Regulations, 1982 Section 11 also clearly delineates a BAMS graduates duty towards an obstetrics patient in labor till delivery. So obstetrics and surgery are very much a part of Ayurvedic course syllabus. If at all , the time to object to this may have been a few decades ago and not now.
My problem stems from the fact that I was given to understand that modern scientific medicine which undertook training in was governed and regulated by Indan Medical Council Act and now by the National Medical Commission. However now I also realize that parts of modern scientific medicine are also governed by Central Council for Indian Medicine. Since the privileges predominantly related to practice of “medicine” which was defined to mean modern scientific medicine in all its branches and includes surgery and obstetrics (Section 2f Indian Medical Council Act 1956). I am not surprised when Central Council for Indian medicine notified privileges of Ayurveda shalya chikitsaks. My issue here is that my professional activities are now governed by two masters and I am not sure of the implications of the same.
How will the courts penalize a MS (Surgery; Modern) who does a Tonsillectomy and patient dies, when the CCIM allows MS (Shalya Chikitsa) to do tonsillectomy, cataract surgery, reduction of fracture and cholecystectomy. A MS (Shalya) can do cholecystectomy and presumably give anesthesia himself for the same but a MS (Surgery) if does cholecystectomy while giving anesthesia himself he is negligent and likely to be penalized. Most practitioners of modern medicine who do invasive procedures have gradually withdrawn from giving anesthesia themselves whether it was ketamine, or propofol or even fortwin phenagan or spinal anesthesia. Will now there be different yardsticks for different kinds of surgeons. How are these new category of super surgeons be insured by indemnity insurers.
The solution I feel is simple. Repeal National medical Commission Act and register all MBBS graduates also in the central council for Indian Medicine maintained registers. For one we will all come out of the clutches of PCPNDT Act since we will then practice legal “Pumsavana” (bringing forth a male or female baby) which is a part of syllabus of BAMS course. Vikiran Avum Chhaya (Radiology and Imaging) Post graduation already exists and there has been a move to consider them at par with MD (Radiodiagnosis) even for PCPNDT Act. Unnecessary confusion in the minds of gullible public is best avoided. Another reason for my wanting to ditch the NMC and join the CCIM is that I want to be governed by the organization which looks out for welfare of those who are registered with it.
Dr Neeraj Nagpal
Convenor,Medicos Legal Action Group, Managing Director MLAG Indemnity,
Ex President IMA Chandigarh
Director Hope Gastrointestinal Diagnostic Clinic,
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