The protest was organised by the Indian Medical Association’s (IMA) Mangalore chapter. "We have closed down our clinics. But we have made arrangements to attend to all cases of emergency," said Mohandas Bhandary, an IMA member.

Several doctors from the district closed down their clinics in support of the all-India protest against moves to close down Medical Council of India and other decisions of the Centre that are “against the interests of doctors”.

The protest was organised by the Indian Medical Association’s (IMA) Mangalore chapter. “We have closed down our clinics. But we have made arrangements to attend to all cases of emergency,” said Mohandas Bhandary, an IMA member.

The protestors said with the proposed National Commission for Human Resource for Health Bill, the Centre was trying to bring many changes that infringe on the rights of doctors. The doctors wanted the Centre to restore the democratically elected MCI, which is managed by members nominated by the Centre.

The doctors were vocal against the move of the Centre to introduce three-and-a-half years Bachelor of rural healthcare course. “They are not talking about the demand for providing basic amenities to doctors in rural areas but introducing a course that would further deteriorate the basic healthcare facilities in rural areas,” said Mahabalesh Shetty, a doctor.

Annayya Kulal, an IMA State Council Member, was against the new service of the State Government to provide medical consultation through SMS by dialling 104. “How can a patient be treated without being checked by doctor personally? Such a service will cause more harm than serve the patient,” he said.

IMA Mangalore Branch president K. Jayaprakash Shetty and other members marched to the office of the Deputy Commissioner N.S. Channappa Gowda and submitted a memorandum.Our Udupi Staff Correspondent writes:

Members of the Udupi-Karavali branch of Indian Medical Association (IMA) staged a protest in front of the Deputy Commissioner’s Office on Monday against the policies of the Centre.

In a memorandum submitted to the Deputy Commissioner M.T. Reju, the association urged the State Government not to pass the Clinical Establishments Bill in the Legislative Assembly. The MPs should oppose the National Council for Human Resources in Health (NCHRH) Bill – 2011. The Union Government should restore the autonomous structure of the Medical Council of India, the memorandum added.

Association president K. Satish Kamath, secretary Umesh Nayak, and treasurer U. Sudhesh Kumar were present.

Clinics closed

Mr. Kamath said the clinics belonging to all members of IMA Udupi-Karavali branch in Udupi and its surrounding urban areas had closed in support of the national-level bandh. The outpatient departments of all hospitals in Udupi and its surroundings were closed. But the emergency wards and inpatient departments of the hospitals were functioning as usual..

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