Supreme Court rescues MBBS students affected by Ukraine crisis, pandemic, asks NMC to set up program

SC took note of the student who could not physically complete his clinical training at a Chinese institute due to Covid19 and said the talent should not be wasted.

Supreme Court

New Delhi: Coming to the aid of MBBS students from foreign universities who have faced difficulties due to the Ukraine crisis and COVID, the Supreme Court on Friday ordered the National Medical Commission (NMC) to draw up a two-month program for students to undergo clinical training in medical schools here .

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The High Court hearing an appeal by the NMC against an order from the Madras High Court to provisionally register an MBBS graduate from a Chinese university, however, ruled that there was nothing wrong with refuse provisional registration as “without practical training, there can be no doctor who is supposed to take care of the citizens of the country”.

A bench of judges Hemant Gupta and V Ramasubramanian said: “There is no doubt that the pandemic has brought new challenges to the whole world, including students, but granting provisional registration to do an internship to a student who does not A lack of clinical training would compromise the health of any country’s citizens and the health infrastructure as a whole.

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However, the high court took note of the fate of the student who could not physically complete the clinical training in the Chinese institute due to the pandemic situation and said that the talent should not be wasted and that the services “should be used to improve health”. country’s infrastructure.

“We therefore order to draw up a program as a one-off measure within two months to enable the student and students in a similar situation who have not actually completed their clinical training to undergo clinical training in India in the medical schools that can be identified by the appellant for a limited time that can be specified by the appellant, on charges that the appellant determines,” Judge Gupta said, writing the judgment.

The 18-page verdict says it will be free for NMC, the successor organization to MCI that oversees medical education in the country, to test these students in any way it sees fit in the coming month. to ensure that they are sufficiently trained to be provisionally registered for a 12-month internship.

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The verdict considered whether the degree issued by a foreign institute, even with regard to clinical training, is binding on the NMC and the student should be registered provisionally. “We find that the Appellant (NMC) is under no obligation to grant provisional enrollment to the student who has not completed the full course duration of the Foreign Institute including clinical training,” said he declared, adding that without practical training, there cannot be just any doctor and the decision not to grant provisional registration “cannot be qualified as arbitrary”.

The bench has been highly critical of the submission of MBBS students like Pooja Thandu Naresh, who got an MBBS degree from Qingdao University, Faculty of Medicine, China, which some similarly placed people got provisional registration.

“This will not confer any right on the student to claim provisional registration for the internship. There can be no equality in illegality,” the bench said. The medical profession had appealed against the July 29 and September 29, 2021 orders of the High Court in motions, filed to quash circulars issued by the Tamil Nadu Medical Council requiring the student to undergo two months of mandatory rotating residency internship, followed by a year of internship before granting permanent registration under the Indian Medical Council Act, now repealed by the National Medical Commission Act 2019.

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The bench found strength with the observations of the NMC that under the legal provisions the student must study the medical course at the same institute located abroad for “the entire duration”.

“However, the fact remains that the students were allowed to take medical courses abroad and they completed their course according to the certificate issued by this foreign institute. Therefore, these national resources cannot be allowed to be wasted, which will affect the lives of young students, who have been admitted to foreign institutes as part of their career prospects,” he said.

Therefore, the services of the students should be used to increase the health infrastructure in the country and hence it would be necessary for the students to undergo actual clinical training of such duration and in institutes identified by the NMC and under such conditions. and the conditions, including the costs of transmitting this training, which can be notified by the medical profession, he said.


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Christi C. Elwood