Action against Kerala doctor for quackery

Kasaragod-based doctor removed from register of Modern Medicine Council for two months for practising as a consultant sonologist without requisite qualification for years

Published - May 29, 2021 05:49 pm IST - Thiruvananthapuram

The Travancore Cochin Council of Modern Medicine (TCMC) has removed the name of a Kasaragod-based doctor from the register of the Modern Medicine Council for a period of two months for practising as a consultant sonologist without requisite qualification.

The council decided to remove the name of Subrahmanya Bhat. K (reg. no. 36760) for practising merely on the strength of a certificate issued for attending a Preconception and Prenatal Diagnostic Techniques (PC-PNDT) training, even though he had not acquired or registered any higher qualification apart from MBBS degree. The complaint against Dr. Bhat was filed by T.V. Padmanabhan, chairman, anti-quackery committee of the Indian Medical Association in 2008.

Though the council had issued an order in August 2008 itself, directing Dr. Bhat not to claim or practise as a consultant sonologist, Dr. Bhat continued to do so in violation of the council’s order.

Right defended

Though Dr. Bhat had defended his right to use the title ‘consultant sonologist’ and had claimed that he would be going on appeal to the Medical Council of India, TCMC said that it had not received any directive from the MCI that set aside the TCMC’s 2008 order. In January this year, upon finding that Dr. Bhat was continuing his practice, Dr. Padmanabhan again raised the issue with the TCMC.

Section 2 (P) of the PC-PNDT Act defines a sonologist as "a person who possesses any one of the medical qualifications recognised under the Indian Medical Council Act 1956 or who possesses a post-graduate qualification in ultra-sonography or imaging techniques or Radiology.”

The TCMC pointed out that Dr. Bhat only holds a certificate he received after attending training under PC-PNDT Act. The said certificate can be used for the purposes specified under PC-PNDT Act. However, for general practice of sonology, one has to acquire additional qualifications, which need to be registered with the TCMC as well.

Not eligible

Though Mr. Bhat pleaded not guilty with the council, considering the gravity of the violation, the Council decided to remove his name from the register of Moderm Medicine Council for a period of two months from the date of issue of order (May 17, 2021).

The TCMC order said that during this period, Dr. Bhat is not eligible for any medical practice, including consultation or prescription of medication or surgery or other related matters as part of medical practice.

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