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integrated courses for Indian systems of medicine …National health policy

The Centre National Health Policy of 2017 recognises “the need for integrated courses for Indian systems of medicine”. The Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM) had issued a directive authorising PG practitioners in specified streams of Ayurveda to be trained to perform 39 surgical procedures and 19 procedures involving the eye, ear, nose and throat. A petition filed by the Indian Medical Association (IMA) before the Supreme Court opposing the directive awaits adjudication. IMA claimed that the “khichdi medical system” would lead to “legalised quackery” and “produce hybrid doctors who are nowhere”.

In India, where the doctor-population ratio stands at 1:834, which is better than the WHO-recommended ratio of 1:1,000, there is a crying need for specialists, especially in rural areas. Encouraging traditional medical practitioners may help reach affordable healthcare to the rural population. At the same time, integrating multiple systems of medicines may turn counterproductive if it is not thought out properly. It may not be fair to let doctors from other streams prescribe allopathic drugs or perform surgeries without the rigorous academic training the discipline demands. New Delhi would do well to tread cautiously on the question of life and death, and the Supreme Court should make a final legal pronouncement expeditiously to settle the issue once and for all.

The Delhi Police on Friday detained more than 200 Congress protesters, including 50 Members of Parliament, from Lutyens’ Delhi, officials said. Congress on Friday called for a mass protest here against the price rise, unemployment and the Goods and Services Tax (GST) hike on essential items.
Ahead of the protest, police issued an advisory saying the traffic movement will be affected in parts of Lutyens’ Delhi on Friday.The police have made special arrangements and diversions will be suggested based on expected spots of congestion on major roads.

In a recent order, the Madras High Court reiterated that qualified ayurveda, siddha, unani and homeopathic (AYUSH) doctors can practise allopathy, if they are well trained in the western medical system, though not exclusively. Quoting Section 17(3) B of the Indian Medicine Central Council Act, 1970, the court said institutionally-qualified AYUSH doctors can practise their respective medical systems along with other modern scientific practices, including surgery and gynaecology, obstetrics, anaesthesiology, ENT, and ophthalmology, based on training and teaching. The ruling is in line with multiple high court orders and the Union government’s plan to roll out a ‘One Nation, One Health System’ policy by 2030 that seeks to integrate modern and traditional systems of medicine


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