Showing posts from November, 2020

The surgeon soldiers

How Army doctors set a record of the world’s highest-altitude major surgery S.G. Vombatkere The soldier protects our nation’s borders with determination, grit and courage, living and fighting all along our Himalayan borders from Ladakh in the west to Arunachal in the east. A soldier’s life in forward areas is extremely tough. In high-altitude areas (HAA, in Army parlance), it is doubly so because the oxygen intake is halved. Low oxygen, combined with sub-zero temperatures further lowered by wind-chill, seriously affects physical efficiency, as anyone who has served at altitudes of over 12,000 ft (3,700 m) knows. Even routine activities are necessarily slow and difficult, sometimes even painful. Prolonged isolation and loneliness are an additional psychological burden. Extreme cold, low oxygen intake and treacherous terrain combine as an ever-present risk to life and limb for every soldier, quite apart from the risks of the enemy’s bullet, grenade, bomb and shell. In these harsh

Ayurvedic doctors and sanction for surgeries

  Dr Anant Bhan Is allowing Ayurvedic doctors to perform surgery legally and medically tenable? What are the issues around allowing non-allopathic surgeons to receive training for various procedures? The story so far: On November 20, the Central Council of Indian Medicine, a statutory body set up under the AYUSH Ministry to regulate Indian systems of medicine, issued a gazette notification allowing postgraduate (PG) Ayurvedic practitioners to receive formal training for a variety of general surgery, ENT, ophthalmology and dental procedures. The decision follows the amendment to the Indian Medicine Central Council (Post Graduate Ayurveda Education) Regulations, 2016, to allow PG students of Ayurveda to practise general surgery. Is allowing non-allopathic doctors to perform surgery legally and medically tenable? The passing of the National Medical Commission Act in 2019 allowed for the formalisation of proposals to induct mid-level care providers — Community Health Providers — i

West Bengal doctors’ body opposes move to permit surgery by Ayurveda students

  A leading doctors’ body in West Bengal has strongly opposed the Centre’s decision to train practitioners of alternative medicine to perform surgical procedures, saying such ‘crosspathy’ or ‘mixopathy’ was anti-people and anti-science. Last week, the Central Council of Indian Medicine issued a notification allowing post-graduate scholars of the Shalya and Shalakya streams of Ayurveda to independently perform 58 kinds of surgeries including those related to the eye and the ears, nose and throat. The Council subsequently issued a ‘clarification’ saying these surgeries were being performed by Ayurveda professionals “since beginning” and that all scientific advances including standardised terminologies were inheritances of entire mankind and no group could claim monopoly over these. “We don’t have any disregard for other streams of medicine; in fact, we have great respect for ancient medicine. But just as how I am not competent to prescribe Ayurvedic medicines, can an Ayurveda practit

No service quota for super-specialty medical courses this year: SC

  The Supreme Court has ordered that 50% reservation for in-service doctors (doctors in government service) in super-specialty courses shall not be implemented in the current academic year. The order came after petitions challenged the stance taken by Kerala High Court and Madras High Court on the matter. According to reports, a Supreme Court bench headed by Justice L Nageswara Rao passed the orders on Friday, in which it said that the reservation for doctors in government service for postgraduate super-specialty courses shall not be implemented in the current academic year (2020-21). The court was hearing a petition that challenged the Madras HC’s order allowing the state government to reserve 50% seats in postgraduate medical courses for doctors in government service.   The government of Tamil Nadu had passed a government order (GO) on November 7 providing 50% reservation in post-graduate and postgraduate super-specialty courses for doctors who are in government service. This reser

Supreme Court reserves order on in-service quota for medical admissions

The Supreme Court on Wednesday reserved its order on the interim question whether Tamil Nadu and Kerala should provide 50% in-service reservation for admissions to super-specialty medical courses in government colleges for the current academic year.  A Bench led by Justice L. Nageswara Rao was hearing a batch of pleas filed by doctors, including postgraduate holders qualified in NEET 2020, challenging reservation of seats for in-service candidates in super-specialty courses. The Tamil Nadu government argued that there was an acute need for super-specialty qualified doctors both in the medical academia and in practice.  The States argued that preparation for admission to these courses had started almost immediately following the Constitution Bench judgment on August 31. The judgment had empowered States to devise a separate channel of entry for in-service doctors. “State has the legislative competence and authority to provide for a separate source of entry for in-service candidate

Centre asks states to take steps to reopen medical colleges from or before Dec 1

The Union Health Ministry Wednesday asked state governments to initiate steps for reopening of medical colleges from December 1 or before it, but with strict adherence to all Covid-19 related guidelines. Educational institutions in the country have been closed since March in view of the coronavirus pandemic. In a letter to the chief secretaries and the administrators of all states and Union Territories, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan also suggested making non-Covid beds available in sufficient numbers in affiliated medical college-hospitals to facilitate undergraduate training. The Health Ministry has obtained concurrence from the Ministry of Home Affairs for re-opening of medical colleges, the letter mentioned. “Accordingly, the states and UTs may take necessary steps to open the medical colleges on or before December 1, 2020,” the health secretary said in his letter dated November 25. “Needless to say, all SOPs/guidelines with respect to social distancing and prevention of spr