Adherence to standards must for medical colleges: SC

Strict adherence to standards must for medical colleges: Supreme Court

Court says poor assessment plaguing medical education system in the country

Credit: PTI file photo.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday stressed at strict adherence of time schedule and standards for establishment of new medical college or to increase intake of students, saying poor assessment was plaguing medical education system in the country.

A bench presided over by Justice A M Khanwilkar rejected a plea for admission for academic year of 2020-21 by a Kerala's trust which failed to remove deficiencies despite getting a certificate to establish a medical college in 2004. The trust claimed to have set up a 300-bed hospital in Walayar, Palakkad district in 2006 with 76 doctors, 380 nurses and other staff.

Holding that issuance and re-issuances of an essentiality certificate is not in any way a ministerial job, the court said, while dealing with a case of maintaining standards in a professional college, strict approach must be adopted as these colleges are responsible for ensuring that medical graduate has the required skill set to work as a doctor in the country. 

"Poor assessment system; exploding number of medical colleges; shortage of patients and clinical materials; devaluation of merit in admission, particularly in private institutions; increasing capitation fees; a debilitated assessment and accreditation system, are problems plaguing our Medical Education system," the court said.

"Allowing such deficient colleges to continue to function jeopardises the future of the student community and leading to incompetent doctors to graduate from such colleges and ultimately pose a bigger risk to the society at large defeating the very purpose of the Essentiality Certificate issued by the State," the bench, also comprising Justices B R Gavai and Krishna Murari, added.

The court said an essentiality certificate by the state government legitimised a medical college declaring it fit to impart education so it cannot be termed as ministerial job.

It pointed out though initially a conditional certificate was granted in 2004 and since then 17 years elapsed, the trust has been unsuccessful in removing the deficiencies.

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