The appeals preferred to the Central government under various provisions of the National Medical Commission (NMC) Act, 2019, will be ordered by the minister for health and family welfare (HFM), with the support of a committee of officials, including senior ministry officials and a Technical Expert Group (TEG) consisting of experts.
The appeals related to regulations or policy decisions of the NMC would also be decided by the minister, according to the guidelines released by the ministry of the appellate mechanism.
The ministry has announced that it has finalised the guidelines containing the appellate mechanism for dealing with the appeals preferred to the central government under certain provisions of the NMC Act with the approval of the HFM.
The appeals preferred under Sections 28(6), 35(7) and 36(3) of the Act shall be decided within 45 days of the receipt of such appeal, including the two weeks taken by the TEG.
There are four specific provisions under the NMC Act, 2019, for appeal, including Section 28 (6), which is an appeal against the decisions of the Commission with regard to the grant of permission for (1) establishment of a new medical college; (2) increase in intake capacity; and (3) starting of a new postgraduate medical course. The person concerned is required to bring the appeal before the Central government within 30 days of the communication of disapproval by the NMC.
Section 35(7) is for appeal against the decisions of the Commission with regard to the grant of recognition of the medical qualifications awarded by the universities in the country. The university or the medical institution concerned may prefer a second appeal to the central government within 30 days of the communication of the decision by the NMC.
Section 36(3), another provision, is on appeal against the decision of the Commission with regard to grant of recognition to the medical qualifications awarded by the universities outside the country.
The foreign university of medical institution concerned may prefer a second appeal to the Central government within 30 days of the communication of decision by NMC.
The fourth provision, Section 9(6), is an appeal by a person who is aggrieved by any decision of the Commission (except the decision rendered under Section 30, which provide for appeals in ethics cases) may prefer an appeal to the Central government against such decision within 30 days of the communication of such decision.
According to the guidelines, the appellate mechanism for the appeals received under Sections 28(6), 35(7) and 36(3) of the Act will ensure that the HFM will be the authority competent to pass orders on them.
A committee of officials, including the additional secretary and financial advisor, additional secretary or joint secretary, medical education, and a nominee from the directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), will assist the minister in the process.
Besides, a Technical Expert Group consisting of four eminent experts from medical background, one expert from para clinical or non-clinical background and the director of medical education will be constituted randomly for each appeal from a Technical Expert Panel of 25 eminent experts with diverse specialties prepared with the approval of the health minister.
The panel should also include five experts from paraclinical or non-clinical backgrounds. Three members of the TEG shall constitute a quorum of the meeting for examining and review.
The TEG shall examine the appeal received under the three sections 28(6), 35(7) and 36(3) of the NMC Act and after examining the facts, it shall convey its opinion to the Ministry in writing, with justification. The TEG shall give its opinion within two weeks of receiving an appeal by the ministry.
The Committee of Officials will examine the recommendation of TEP and shall follow the principle of natural justice and hear the appellant, if required, before finalisation of its views. The opinion of the TEG and views of the Committee of Officials shall be placed before the HFM for a decision in the matter.
The Minister shall take a decision in the matter based on the facts of the case and views of the Committee of Officials. The minister shall also take personal hearing of the appellant, if he or she so desires. The decision shall be conveyed to the appellant accordingly, said the guideline.
In the matter of appeals under Section 9(6) of the Act, which is against any of the provisions of the regulations framed by the Commission; any policy decision of the commission; any service matters of the employees; and miscellaneous appeal such as denial of issuance of any certificate, registration etc, the guideline has stipulated the appellate mechanism.
The appeals on regulations and policy decisions of the Commission shall be processed on file and submitted to the Minister for a decision.
The appeals regarding service matters of the employees of the Commission shall be disposed of at the level of secretary of the ministry, and all other miscellaneous appeals shall also be processed on the file and disposed of at the secretary level after following the due process, it added.
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