Medical education ordinance registered in Parliament

2018-03-30

Himalayan News Service

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The National Medical Education Ordinance was registered at the Parliament Secretariat today. The ordinance is likely to be presented in the parliamentary meeting tomorrow. 

“The ordinance is likely to be presented in the parliamentary meeting tomorrow. We have distributed copies of the ordinance to all members of the Parliament,” said Bharat Raj Gautam, spokesperson for the Parliament Secretariat. 

As per the Constitution of Nepal 2072, the ordinance should be endorsed by both the houses of the Parliament. If the joint meeting of the Parliament passes the ordinance, then it will take the form of a law. But if both the houses don't act on the ordinance within sixty days, it would become null and void.

“We can't say anything now on whether the Parliament will support or reject the ordinance,” said Dev Gurung, chief whip CPN-MC. “We are happy that the ordinance is registered in the secretariat and are hopeful that it will be passed by the Parliament,” said Dr Govinda KC, senior orthopaedic surgeon at Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital. 

The ordinance is in accordance with the agreement reached between the government and Dr KC..

President Bidhya Devi Bhandari had authenticated the National Medical Education Ordinance as per Article 114 of the constitution on November 10, 2017. The then Cabinet had endorsed the ordinance on medical education and forwarded it to the president for authentication on October 23.

The ordinance bars opening of new medical colleges in Kathmandu Valley for the next 10 years. It also states that a hospital has to run for at least three years to be eligible for affiliation to run a medical college.

As per the ordinance, a university will not be allowed to grant affiliation to more than five medical colleges. 

Likewise, affiliation cannot be granted to more than one medical college in the same district and 75 per cent of the seats in government medical colleges should be allocated for scholarships. There will be a single entrance examination throughout the country for all the students seeking to pursue medicine.

A Medical Education Committee, which will have the power to cancel affiliation granted to medical colleges, will also be formed. 

The draft ordinance was finalised by the government's talk team comprising former health minister Gagan Thapa and advocate Om Prakash Aryal, and Dr KC's team. 

Dr KC had staged hunger strikes, demanding an end to irregularities in the health and medical education sectors. He had demanded immediate passage of the Medical Education Bill as per the recommendations made by the Mathema-led panel.