The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Health and Family Welfare on Tuesday rejected the Centre’s proposal to allow practitioners of alternative medicine to prescribe modern medicines after clearing a bridge course, The Tribune reported.

The panel, which is headed by Samajwadi Party leader Ram Gopal Yadav, provided suggestions on the government’s National Medical Commission Bill. The draft legislation proposes to allow practitioners of traditional forms medicine, such as ayurveda, unani, siddha and homeopathy – or AYUSH – to practise modern medicine after clearing a bridge course. The parliamentary panel, however, rejected the government’s proposal and instead, suggested allowing states to enhance the capacity of AYUSH experts.

The panel advised the Centre to use the MBBS final year examinations to assess medical graduates who want to practise traditional forms of medicine instead of conducting exit examinations as suggested in the draft bill.

The panel also suggested that the Centre adopt an integrated approach towards the two systems of medicine, Mint reported. It recommended including modules from AYUSH courses in MBBS curriculum and having students pursuing AYUSH courses study modules on modern medicine.

The Indian Medical Association has opposed the draft legislation, warning that it will create “an army of half-baked doctors in the country”.