The Union Cabinet on Friday approved the setting up of a National Commission for Indian System of Medicine. A law proposed to set up the organisation seeks to replace existing regulator Central Council for Indian Medicine to ensure transparency, the Centre said.
The draft Bill has provisions for four autonomous boards. The Board of Ayurveda and Unani and the Board of Unaini, Siddha and Sowarigpa will be responsible for education in these fields. The Board of Assessment and Rating will oversee the process of granting permissions to educational institutions, and the Board of Ethics and Registration of Practitioners will serve as a database and monitor ethical matters.
The bill also suggests a common entrance exam and an exit exam, which all graduates will have to clear to receive practising license. It also recommends the introduction of a teacher’s eligibility test to determine the “standard of teachers” before appointment and promotions.
The Centre said the proposed law seeks to reform the Indian medicine sector and streamline it like the allopathy system of medicine. The bill will “promote availability of affordable healthcare services in all parts of the country”, the government added.
Health Minister JP Nadda had tabled the bill in Parliament in December 2017. It proposes allowing practitioners of alternative medicines such as homoeopathy and ayurveda to practise modern medicine after attending a short-term “bridge course”.
The Indian Medical Association has repeatedly opposed the bill. Almost 2.7 lakh doctors across the country had protested against the proposed law on November 15, 2016.