1,700 doctors who did PG Diploma from IGNOU can’t practise cardiology as MCI refuses to recognise their degrees

Dr KK Aggarwal

The two-year course was started in 2006 to train doctors as cardiologists in 70 hospitals across the country. Between 2006 and 2012, about 1,700 doctors opted for the course. The university, however, stopped fresh enrolment in 2013 after the Medical Council of India (MCI) refused to grant a license to students pursuing it.

A group of doctors who had earlier taken the course then approached the Delhi High Court. In September last year, the court asked the Union Health Ministry to take a view in the matter.The MCI-Board of Governors too concluded that those doctors cannot be allowed to work as cardiologists.

 Reason Given: Evaluation of the training programme was not done within one year of starting it as per the Indian Medical Act, 1956 rules.

My Comments

MCI Ethics Regulation: 1.4.2 Physicians shall display as suffix to their names only recognized medical degrees or such certificates/diplomas and memberships/honours which confer professional knowledge or recognizes any exemplary qualification/achievment , under clause 1.42 there should be no to write about their diploma on their letter head along with then name of IGNOU. It will still be IGNOU certified and not MCI certified.

The clause 1.4.2 does not stop people for doing non-MCI diploma or take certificates. It give options of both only recognized medical degrees or such certificates/diplomas. MCI itself has no Diploma or a certificate course in cardiology, so other certificate and diplomas courses will invariably be started by institutions. The MCI clause 7,20 should not be read in isolation but read with A Physician shall not claim to be specialist unless he has a special qualification in that branch. Also, the reason given by MCI is technical and not on merit.