The Ministry of National Health Services directed the Islamabad district administration and police to take over possession of the PMDC building and informed its 220 employees that the office would remain closed for a week. A retired PMDC official stated that even he was unaware of the ministry taking over the building.
The new organization, PMC, will be run by a nine member body with a head member appointed as president. It will consist of three different boards, namely The Medical and Dental Council, The National Medical and Dental Academic Board, and The National Medical Authority.
The representative body of doctors, PMA, called the decision to dissolve PMDC “undemocratic” and requested political parties to reject the president’s decree.
A statement issued by the NHS regarding the formation of PMC said a new era was in order to maintain a standard for medical education, training, and qualification in order to regulate and control the medical and dental profession.
The statement also mentioned that the government was acting to protect documents relating to licences and registration of practitioners and institutions, and apologized for inconveniences caused to those seeking medical and dental admissions.
“The Ministry of NHS will be taking necessary steps immediately for the supervision and overseeing of the admissions process to ensure it is properly completed,” said the statement.
According to an anonymous source who was a former member of the council, representatives from different private colleges held a meeting with a US official through Skype, in which it was decided the new ordinance would have lesser responsibilities as a regulator of medical colleges, colleges would be allowed to increase fees or make their own criterion for admission, etc.
Special Assistant to the PM on Health, Dr. Zafar Mirza stated the need for a new ordinance had been a need of the hour.
“World has progressed but we are still following decades old methods for our medical education. We need to liberalise our medical education and for that practices of other countries would be followed,” he said.
He also added that it had been necessary to take over the council building immediately to protect sensitive records.
The Secretary General PMA, Dr. Qaisar Sajjad, disagrees with the action.
“The government should have tabled a bill in Parliament House so that all stakeholders would have given their input…we demand that political parties should reject the ordinance,” he said.
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