- To differentiate between Quacks and actual health practitioners, Modi government has come up with Healthcare Professionals Registry
- This will help in eliminating illegal practitioners who run their practice by winning the trust of locals
- It will help in providing quality healthcare access to more than 1.35 billion Indians
When any disease hits the Indian borders, its related epidemic is not the only life-threatening phenomenon that occurs in the country. Uncountable Jholachap Doctors are a second breed of epidemic working in tandem with an already existing one to puncture our health infrastructure. Now, the Modi government has decided to take a strict stand on them.
Modi government to launch Healthcare Professionals Registry
The Modi government has decided to launch a decisive drive for eliminating quacks from the public healthcare system. The unqualified medical practitioners, whether they are doctors or nurses will now be thrown out of the system. It will be done through an elimination method.
Government has decided to launch Healthcare Professionals Registry which will register eligible medical professionals on a single portal. The Registry will include details of qualified practitioners from every segment of the healthcare sectors, including Allopath, Ayurveda, Homeopath, Siddha, Tibb and Unani. Before visiting any Doctor, patients will be able to check his/her details.
Dr R.S. Sharma, CEO of National Health Authority said, “The Healthcare Professionals Registry shall act as a single source of truth for all healthcare professionals in the ABDM (Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission) ecosystem”
State authorities and Medical bodies will be joining hands
Practitioners willing to start their journey in the sector will need to furnish a degree and registration certificate to authorities. Apprising about the process, Sharma added, “The healthcare professionals applying for enrolment under Healthcare Professionals Registry are required to submit their registration certificate, degree/diploma and proof of employment (in case of government employees). After submission, this information will be verified by the respective council/governing body under which the healthcare professionals are registered. Subsequent to a successful validation of the information, the account will be activated,”
The responsibility of enrolment will be overseen by state authorities. They will be collaborating with National Medical Commission (NMC), Dental Council of India (DCI), National Commission for Indian System of Medicine (NCISM) and National Commission for Homeopathy (NCH) for the process. Government is planning to include more bodies as well. “We plan to increase this significantly over the coming few months. Our teams are working on integrations with different medical councils and medical bodies to get more registered practitioners on board” added Sharma
The mechanism of Quacks
Fake medical practitioners, colloquially termed as Quacks are the biggest threats to India’s healthcare sector. It is only a recent phenomenon that roads have been stretched to last miles of the country. Before all of that the infrastructure was so poor, it took hours for common people to get to good hospitals. Though the public healthcare system was there, it is an open secret that beyond primary healthcare, they did not have the capacity to do much. Moreover, absence of medical practitioners at those centres is still a big concern.
In those scenarios, people look for secondary and cheaper sources of treatments. That’s where these quacks pitch in. Normally, they are failed doctors, compounders or even attendees in public healthcare facilities. Sometimes, licensed medicine sellers also start providing medical services to people. For people who do not have much money to pay for expensive doctors, these people are like sages sent from the Swarg.
People believe that just because they have spent considerable time in the vicinity of medical practitioners and medicines, they must possess certain kinds of skills. This Halo effect is what these ‘Doctors’ capitalise on and charge non-standard fees from patients. They then offer discounts to them in the name of being a neighbour, fellow villager among others to add one more layer of trust.
Quacks are white collared killers
The Quacks have absolutely no experience whatsoever and often the lives of people in danger, sometimes even killing them. Time and again the news about people losing their lives due to Quackery keeps appearing in local newspapers, but no substantive action beyond arrest is taken. According to a 2017 report, nearly 12.6 percent of people who lost their lives in Haryana during the year died at the hands of these unqualified practitioners.
But, this practice is not saturated to a single state. The whole of India is under their grip. According to the Indian Medical Association, 1 million quacks are currently operating in India. Even that number seems to be small as most of these Quacks start to pose as normal civilians when people counting them visit villages in which they are operating.
Since, it became impossible to locate them, differentiating them from real ones is the only viable option. It will help in providing quality healthcare access to more than 1.35 billion Indians.