ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC) has decided to take strict action against those medical institutions which failed to sustain the minimum standards to maintain the international recognition of MBBS and BDS programmes.
According to a PMDC official, the inspection and evaluation criteria for recognition of the medical colleges have been revised and after its pilot-test, the council has started implementing it. He said that under the new criteria inspections of all medical and dental colleges in public as well as private sectors were carried out with the objective to enhance the standards of medical and dental education. He said the total number of registered medical and dental practitioners in the country as of June, 2019 was 257,657.
They included 186,980 general medical practitioners, 23,133 general dental practitioners, 45,378 medical, surgical and allied specialists, and 2,166 dental and allied specialists. Annually, around 18,000 students are being enrolled in 59 public and 109 private medical and dental colleges in the country, he added.
He said that the council has realised that there is a dire need for major reforms to streamline the affairs of the PMDC and make it an effective regulatory institution for promotion of medical and dental education in the country, at par with international requirements.
He said that the PMDC office is being put online, and all sections and regional offices have been interconnected through the internet.
He said the council was also registering over a thousand doctors annually through NEB examination of Pakistani citizens who obtained foreign basic medical and dental degrees. He said the council has held over 10 sessions in the short span of time for early disposal of cases, timely decision-making and framing of regulations, etc. on the recommendations of its committees.
He said the admission regulations 2018 had been revised and the admission policy for the 2019-20 session has been announced to ensure transparency and merit in the admission process. He said major information technology reforms have been initiated, which included infrastructure development, capacity of staff, paperless environment, e-filing, installation of latest software as well as development of a user -friendly website, etc.
The official said that the PMDC is working for its global recognition through World Federation of Medical Education (WFME) in the year 2019.
The provisional licence and registration process has been made efficient enabling a turnaround period of less than a fortnight to assist new graduates to start their house jobs as early as possible. All licensing and renewal processes are available online and through a secured data system enabling immediate processing, the council is doing away with past delays, he added.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 8th, 2019.