Amidst controversies over the National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill, 2019, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said that this is a far-reaching reform in the medical field and seeks to correct the prevalent problems.
In an interview with news agency IANS, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the NMC bill contains multiple reforms that curb avenues of corruption and boost transparency.
"At a time when nations are looking at India to power the next wave of growth in the world, we realise that this can happen only with a healthy populace. Freeing the poor from the vicious cycle of poverty that lack of health perpetuates is very important," PM Modi said while underlining the priorities of the government after completing 75 days in their second stint.
On August 1, the Rajya Sabha passed the NMC Bill, 2019, replacing the controversial Indian Medical Council (IMC), which aims to regulate medical education and practices in India. While the bill introduces some path-breaking provisions, not all are happy. A section of doctors have vehemently opposed this idea and feels that the Bill is dominated by central government nominees. Most who have been tracking the development in relation to medical regulations appear in favour of a system that replaces the Medical Council in its existing structure.
Modi said that the NMC will bring transparency, accountability and quality in the governance of medical education in the country. He said that is a progressive legislation which will reduce the burden on students, increase the number of medical seats and reduce cost of medical education.
As a result, more talented youth can take up medicine as a profession which will help in increasing the number of medical professionals, he said.
Referring to centrally sponsored Ayushman Bharat Yojana or Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY), the PM said that it is bringing about a revolution in the healthcare sector and is also increasing awareness as well as affordability of quality healthcare, especially in tier-2 and tier-3 towns.
"We are also working to ensure that there is at least one medical college between every 3 districts. With rising awareness about healthcare, rising incomes and greater focus on aspirational goals among people, we will need thousands and thousands of doctors to fulfil the demand, especially in rural and urban areas," the PM said.
Modi said that the NMC will address these issues for a better outcome for all stakeholders, adding that the academic year 2019-20 will see the biggest addition of medical seats in government colleges in a single year with the creation of around 2 dozen new government medical colleges.
"Our road map is clear -- a transparent, accessible and affordable medical education system leading to better healthcare outcomes," he said.
Edited by Chitranjan Kumar