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Letting other system doctors give allopathic drugs dangerous: IMA

New Delhi: The Indian Medical Association (IMA) on Wednesday opposed a health ministry directive allowing practitioners of homeopathy, ayurveda and siddha to dispense allopathic medicines for common health problems, saying it could prove to be dangerous.

At a press conference here, the IMA said the notification is an apparent attempt by the ministry to play with the lives of the innocent citizens in the garb of providing effective healthcare.

“The IMA unequivocally and in clear terms, opposes the said letter because it is contrary to the existing law and will have adverse consequences on the health of the innocent citizens,” said IMA general secretary Dr Narendra Saini.

“The Ayush department is well aware that practitioners of alternate medicine do not possess the knowledge, expertise, understanding and the intellect to understand the basics of allopathic medicines before prescribing it to patients.”

Citing shortage of doctors at the level of primary health centres and sub-centres, a letter by a senior health ministry official has asked for practitioners of Indian systems of medicine (ayurveda, unani, siddha) to be included in the mainstream.

The letter asks state medical councils to amend their respective laws and provide an enabling provision allowing enrolment of such medical practitioners. [IANS]


  1. Lopa Lopa Friday, November 18, 2016

    Ayush doctors may lack the knowledge or proper training but it’s very wrong to say they lack the intellect.thats not the language an intellectual group or association should use. That shows arrogance

  2. Naresh Dalaldr Naresh Dalaldr Saturday, June 22, 2013

    Restricting government’s move for public welfare will be wrong and unjust to the masses that are devoid of medical care at primary level even after 66 years of independence. Govt is not of fools who are not aware of the standards and competency what is required to meet the shortage of qualified doctors in the country particularly at lowest level where MBBS doctors are never interested to serve. IMA’s opposition against modernisation of ayus pathy and inclusion of its doctors in main health stream with permission to prescribe modern medicines can’t be justified.
    I refute the charges levelled by IMA that ayus doctors have lack of knowledge of allopathy. It is wrong to say that these doctors don’t understand allopathic drugs’ pharmacological composition, pharmacotherapeutics, ADR and drug interactions when co-prescribed with other allopathic or ayush drugs. They do understand not only that but have the basic knowledge of human anatomy, physiology and bio-chemistry not only in terms of molecular, cellular and genetic sciences but with basic concepts of natural science of vata (physics’ attributes), pitta (chemistry), kapha (material science) relevant to human body.
    I strongly believe that the shortage of doctors could be met by employing ISM doctors empowered with modern medicines and methods of treatment. Given that the government would not need to start new short term degree or diploma courses.
    Every law has a flaw and every ruling is not cooling. Need is that, for the best healthcare services of the masses, it should be done without delay. Government’s efforts in this regard are not subjected to object. IMA is requested to quit its prejudice and insistence. It is not an issue of prestige.

  3. Dr.L.V.Raghav Rao Dr.L.V.Raghav Rao Thursday, June 20, 2013

    now let everybody jump the bandwagon .More the merrier!!!

  4. Dr.L.V.Raghav Rao Dr.L.V.Raghav Rao Thursday, June 20, 2013

    when supreme court penalised an”Allopathic ” doctor for prescribing LIV 52, saying that cross prescribing is not allowed, Ayush doctors who come from various other ‘pathies ‘ are punishable. The reason is simple.Prescribing a drug just doesn’t mean writing the drugs name. One has to understand the pharmocology, pharmaco dynamics,adverse reactions,side effects,and drug interactions etc. When the government and the AYUSH doctors want to prescribe the drugs , they hardly think about any of these things. The AYUSH doctors understanding if the Physiology and pathology and pharmacology arre diffeerent. It is a disservice to the unsuspecting patients .

  5. Dr. Prakash Mehta Dr. Prakash Mehta Thursday, June 20, 2013

    Alternative medicine word is misleading. Actually it should be ‘Scientifically Unproved Methods Of Attempted Healing’. We Indians are expert in labeling fine but misleading words, e.g. ‘Ayush’ which convey a fine meaning of ‘life & longevity’ in our mind creating a false impression. ‘Ayurveda’ also misleads similarly. There is one famous product for application in eye named as ‘Jivdaya Netraprabha’.
    It has neither concern with ‘Jivdaya’ i.e. pity for living nor with ‘Netraprabha’ i.e. light of eye. There are many such misleading words cheating and creating misleading impression in our mind, more so in minds of lay people. Ayurveda is an icon like holy cow in Indian culture. If you go against it then you may hurt sentiments of many. No one including big profit making ayurvedic drug manufacturing companies or great ayurvedic colleges are making any effort to investigate ayurvedic drugs by double blind multicentered RCTs to prove its effectiveness and to detect side effects. Why so? Ayurvedic medicines are claimed to be effective and harmless. If this claim can be scientifically proved by above mentioned uniformly accepted methods then our ayurvedic drug manufacturing companies can patent it and make huge profit. But why they are not doing so?

  6. Dr.O.P.Sharma Dr.O.P.Sharma Thursday, June 20, 2013

    Allowing AAYUSH use of allopathic drugs is equated to allowing to drive a bus to a person holding two wheeler licence

  7. Dr.Shivam Sharma Dr.Shivam Sharma Thursday, June 20, 2013

    If govt. is seriously facing scarcity of doctors then it should allow the branch of allopathy- Dentistry to develop and allow the DCI to introduce pg diplomas in basic emergency and general medicine for the dentists so that they could help it out the problem govt. is facing .Although our country is already producing more than 20000 Dental graduates every year With and as a subject in their undergraduation.

  8. Dr Murli Janardan Sabath Dr Murli Janardan Sabath Thursday, June 20, 2013

    It is high time we develop an understanding that each system of Medicine has its own existence and hence, there should be adequate attempts to further strengthen each system such as Ayurveda, Unani or Homeopathy, etc. It is ridiculous to allow one system to embrace other’s just because we allow them to have the common degree. First of all, India has segmentation in various fields, including choice of therapy. There are people who prefer Homeopathy or Ayurveda over Allopathy. So there is no need to amalgamate all these systems and prepare a KHICHDI out of it.
    IMA has taken a correct stand on this issue and we all should support it. Moreover, the doctors themselves need to respect their own field of medicine rather than intruding to other’s fields.
    And as Dr Neeraj Nagpal has commented, if there is no way to improve or distinguish other systems, it is better we scrap all and focus on a single system of medicine. It is true that India lives in diversity. But now it seems the more diverse our culture and practices are, the more different we have been appearing in front of the world. Let’s start uniting ourselves and strengthen our fundamental ethics and values.

  9. P.Narayana Reddy P.Narayana Reddy Thursday, June 20, 2013

    When the government is not allowing a car driver to a drive heavy vehicle like a bus,how can it allow alternative medicine degree holders to practice allopathic medicine about which they did not read and write any examination.Ever since Ghulam Nabi Azad became central health minister,the medical education has suffered a lot.He helped the private medical college managements by dissolving the MCI and nominating the members of his choice.It was the decisions of central health ministry like increasing the MBBS seats and MD seats with same number of faculty and relaxation of rules to set up medical college.Those who are opposing the proposed central ministry move to allow alternative medical degree holders to practice allopathic medicine never controlled Dr Kethan Desai who was considered as father of corruption in regulatory bodies.Strangely he was not touched by the Indian Medical Association.Once he was caught redhanded by the CBI, nobody thought that he will be convicted.That was the level of corruption in our country.Now even the appointment of directors or new team of MCI is not transparent. Those who cry foul in other ministries should demand enquiry against all the decisions of central ministry after the MCI was dissolved.Today in A.P. majority of private medical colleges are running speciality and superspeciality degree courses with onpaper professors atleast one in each department and conducting exams successfully with the knowledge of local IMA. What specialist services these students students can provide once they are passed is not difficult to imagine.Employing touts to get patients is common in places like Vijayawada, Guntur,Nellore,Tirupati. I donot think that a specialist without specialist knowledge is in anyway better than a quack.The IMA lost credibility long ago and kneejerk reactions like what it is doing now will not help to improve the situation.

  10. Prof.Alexander John Prof.Alexander John Thursday, June 20, 2013

    Nobody should be allowed to practise a science that they have not been trained in. That will result in making a mockery of Medical practice . AYUSH pactioners should limit their practice to the science that they know.

    If the Government has a serious issue about manpower shortage in the Health sector, they can rope in Nurses, para medical and allied health professionals for some primary care activities such as IEC, distribution of ORS, being DOTS providers, First Aid, Environmental engineering and vector control etc. and for identifying Risks and referring patients to the appropriate practitioner/ facility at the appropriate time .
    These seemingly insignificant practices will actually result in significant improvements in Health in general and Public Health in particular.

    Dr.Alexander John ,
    Professor of Community Medicine,
    AIMS, Kochi.

  11. Dr.Deepak Dongre Dr.Deepak Dongre Thursday, June 20, 2013

    Ayush doctors are mostly concentrated in Rural areas and peripheries than urban. Not a single IMA member or post-MBBS, wants to go to rural area. There is saturation of MBBS doctors in urban area. Still they dont want to go rural area, where they are needed most. Then whats the use of their degrees? Let all the medical colleges to be converted into Ayush Colleges, shorten the course and then specialization in Modern Medicine. Govt. is doing right thing. IMA is political body of Allopathy Doctors, let them politicize the issue. They are feeling insecure due to this move.

  12. Dr Neeraj Nagpal Dr Neeraj Nagpal Thursday, June 20, 2013

    I think time has come to scrap ayurved, unani, homeopathy at graduate level. All Ayush colleges should be converted into medical colleges providing MBBS degree. That way all graduates will be uniformly trained and qualified to use modern medicine. Ayush can then be introduced as specialization after MBBS.

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