Doctors in the state are rushing from one conference to another to get grace marks after the Medical Council of India (MCI) made it compulsory for them to do so in order to renew their registration in 2016.
The doctors have termed it an unscientific decision and sought the government’s intervention.
Forced by grace marks compulsions, the doctors have been attending conferences of different disciplines, even those not related to their field of specialisation. Shimoga Indian Medical Association president Dr Vani Kori urged the government to intervene.
In foreign countries, doctors have to pass the examinations conducted once in five years to update their medical information in order to renew their registration. In the same way, the MCI had introduced guidelines for the doctors. According to this, doctors have to renew their registration every five years.
As part of this, the doctors first have to obtain grace marks by attending continuing medical education (CME) programmes for 30 hours. Doctors fear that this will create room for corruption.
The criteria of getting grace marks for renewal of registration is not followed in all the states.
Incidentally, MCI is appointing supervisors to inspect the CME programmes to decide the grace marks.
As the organisers have to bear the expenses of such supervisors, local medical associations are finding it difficult to organise the programmes, Dr Kori said.
Apart from this, the organisers have to record the programme and give it to the Karnataka Medical Council. This will diminish the self respect of the doctors fraternity, she said.
In Karnataka, more than 71 per cent of doctors work in villages and remote places.
But they have to attend seminars being held in district centres or towns for the grace marks. Naturally, this affects patients as well.
If the doctors don’t participate in the CME programmes for 30 hours, they won’t be eligible to practise either in Karnataka or in other states after 2016.
But the doctors of other states where these norms are not compulsory will be eligible to practise and this poses a problem for Karnataka doctors.
Meanwhile, Karnataka Mental Health Task Force chairman Dr KA Ashok Pai said this problem has been placed before the government.
This unscientific decision has been brought to the notice of the Chief Minister and Health Minister, who promised to find a solution to the problem, he added.