MoHFW has PMC’s pre-natal advisory body in sick bay

The pre-Conception and pre-Natal Pune district medical supervisory committee, formed by the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), is in violation of the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act (PCPNDT), 1994, which governs it. According to the national inspection and monitoring committee of the Ministry of home and family welfare (MoHFW), under the PCPNDT Act, the district supervisory committees cannot have doctors or members from the private medical fraternity.

Dr Neelam Singh, who heads the monitoring team which visited PMC earlier this month, said, “We came across certain discrepancies and also noticed that PMC’s advisory committee of PCPNDT has members from private associations like radiology and Indian Medical Association (IMA) which is wrong. Such members cannot be on board.”

Despite being made aware of the same, the health department of PMC has proposed a new committee, created for the year 2019-2020, with radiologists and gynaecologists from the private health sector.

The national monitoring committee has demanded that the PMC health department take immediate action and remove such doctors or face action.

Dr Singh said, “In June we will meet with minister of health Dr Harsh Vardhan and PMC’s violations will be put forth.”

The PMC claims the state health department has suggested that these private members be on the committee board.

Dr Archana Patil, Maharashtra’s director health services, said, “To have private doctors on board is wrong, but they can allow private doctors as ‘invitee members’ for meetings. However, they cannot be entertained during decision making.”

In her letter dated May 2019, addressed to all health officers of municipal corporations and civil hospitals, a copy of which is with HT, it has been stated that health departments can choose members from private hospitals from radiology, sonology on the PCPNDT board and they can also invite them for meetings, but these members cannot participate is any final decision making. Dr Manisha Naik, who currently handles the PCPNDT cell, said, “The reform was proposed a few weeks ago by the head of the cell, but there is no update yet.” As for new members as suggested by PMC health department, Naik said, “New members suggested are from Indian radiological and imaging association, an NGO and Indian medical association.” Dr Ramchandra Hankare, health chief of PMC, said, “We will reform the committee as per the government’s guidelines. We did receive a new notification from the state government and will act as per that.”

First Published:
May 31, 2019 23:55 IST

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