The government wants AYUSH medical graduates to clear an exit examination before becoming eligible to practise the profession, something on the lines of a similar norm proposed in the National Medical Commission Bill that received the Union Cabinet's clearance recently.
The proposal is part of a draft bill by the Ministry of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH), which also seeks to set up a National Commission of Indian Systems of Medicine and Homeopathy.
According to the ministry, the new body would replace two existing bodies to govern higher education in homeopathy and Ayurveda -- Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM) and Central Council of Homoeopathy (CCH).
The decisions were part of an announcement by AYUSH Secretary Rajesh Kotecha while briefing the media here at AYUSH Bhawan.
According to Kotecha, the new bill calls for AYUSH National Teachers Eligibility Test to bring in quality teachers in tradition system to medicine.
"AYUSH National Teachers Eligibility Test shall be conducted for appointment of all teachers in AYUSH institutions, and a unique verification code for such teachers shall be allotted by CCH/CCIM before their appointment." said Kotecha.
Stating that soon it would be mandatory for those seeking admission in AYUSH's undergraduate courses to clear the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET), the Secretary said that for all systems of AYUSH, minimum 50 per cent marks should be obtained by the candidates to be eligible for admission to undergraduate courses.
Currently, the government conducts separate NEET examination for the PG courses in AYUSH Medicines, but soon the government is planning to merge the AYUSH undergraduate courses with the main NEET conducted for MBBS.
"The AYUSH ministry in consultation with NITI Aayog has formulated the inclusion of integrative medicine in the proposed Bill which will enable AYUSH practitioners to practice modern medicines and the vice-versa after undergoing 'bridge course'."
A committee under the chairmanship of Niti Aayog Vice Chairman examined the working of the existing regulatory bodies of the Indian Systems of Medicine and recommended creation of National Commission for Indian Systems of Medicine and Homoeopathy.
The press briefing was also attended by other senior officers of the AYUSH Ministry including Joint Secretary P.K. Pathak.