The National M.Sc Medical Teachers Association (NMMTA) protested here on Monday, saying that the new norms under the Clinical Establishments (Central Government) rules on diagnostic laboratories deny them any role in clinical diagnostics, including signing the reports.
Protesting, over 100 members of the NMMTA said that while many corporate hospitals and private diagnostic laboratories in the country have Medical M.Sc post-graduates interpreting and signing laboratory test reports, the new norms make it mandatory that all diagnostic laboratories have doctors (registered with Medical Council of India or State Medical Council) signing test reports.
The union government enacted the Clinical Establishments (Registration and Regulation) Act, 2010, to register and regulate all clinical establishments. Subsequently, the National Council for Clinical Establishments was set up and the Clinical Establishments (Central Government) Rules were notified in 2012.
While ten states and six Union Territories, except Delhi, adopted the rules, they are being implemented in Rajasthan and Jharkhand as of now.
"The implementation of these rules in Rajasthan and Jharkhand recently is making post-graduates jittery across the country. There is widespread resentment among Medical M.Sc. post-graduates, whose concern is that hundreds of them will either lose jobs or be demoted to the role of laboratory technicians if the new rules are implemented by all the states. However, the Union Health Ministry is firm on its stand," said a statement from the NMMTA.
The NMMTA members, who have also written to Health Minister J.P. Nadda, have sought the modification of National Council for Clinical Establishment guidelines to accommodate medical M.Sc degree as a qualification to interpret and sign diagnostic test reports in microbiology and biochemistry.
Arjun Maitra, Secretary, NMMTA, said that Medical M.Sc is a post-graduate degree offered in medical colleges recognised by the MCI and awarded under the faculty of medicine by the university.
"The students are also trained in all aspects of clinical diagnostics, including specimen collection, processing, quality control and interpretation of results," he said.
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