In order to acquire a license to practice Indian Medicine systems, medical graduates may soon have to clear an exit exam.
The Union Cabinet has approved the draft National Commission for Indian Systems of Medicine (NCIM) Bill, 2018, which seeks to replace the existing regulator Central Council for Indian Medicine (CCIM) with a new body to ensure transparency.
The AYUSH Ministry, in consultation with NITI Aayog, has formulated the inclusion of integrative medicine in the proposed bill which will enable AYUSH practitioners to practice modern medicines and vice versa.
The proposal is part of a draft bill by the Ministry of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH), which also seeks to set up a National Commission of Indian Systems of Medicine and Homeopathy.
This decision was taken under a committee who examined the working of the existing regulatory bodies of Indian Systems of Medicine and recommended the new body to be created. The members of the committee included vice chairman, Niti Aayog, additional principal secretary to the prime minister, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Niti Aayog and secretary, Ministry of Ayush
According to the ministry, the existing two bodies which are Central Council of Indian Medicine and the Central Council of Homeopathy will be replaced by National Commission of Indian Systems of Medicine and Homeopathy to ensure transparency.
The decisions were announced by AYUSH Secretary Rajesh Kotecha at the AYUSH Bhawan. According to the new bill, AYUSH National Teachers Eligibility Test will be conducted for the teachers to bring in quality teachers in medicine.
“AYUSH National Teachers Eligibility Test shall be conducted for appointment of all teachers in AYUSH institutions, and unique verification code for such teachers shall be allotted by CCH/CCIM before their appointment,” he said
He added that soon it would become mandatory for students to clear National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) to seek admission in the undergraduate courses of AYUSH. To become eligible the students will have to obtain 50 percent marks in the Entrance Test.
Currently, the government conducts a separate NEET examination for PG courses in AYUSH Medicines, but soon the government is planning to merge the undergraduate entrance test with NEET.
“However, we are still exploring whether to merge the entrance exam with NEET or to have our own common entrance exam,” the official said.
The draft National Medical Commission Bill which seeks to replace the existing apex medical education regulator Medical Council of India (MCI) with a new body, also calls for a licentiate exam which all medical graduates will have to clear to get practicing licenses.