Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated earlier this week that the government is contemplating to bring in a law that makes it compulsory for doctors to prescribe drugs by generic names.
Medical Council of India (MCI), the statutory body that regulates medical education and registers doctors, on Friday issued a public notice to all physicians in the country to prescribe drugs only by generic names and warned of disciplinary action against doctors violating the code.
"All the registered medical practitioners under the IMC Act are directed to comply with the aforesaid provisions of the Regulations without fail," MCI said in a notice addressed to deans of all the medical colleges, director of all hospitals, presidents of all the state medical councils, health secretaries, directors of medical education and directors of health services of all the states.
"For any doctor violating clause 1.5 of ethics regulation, suitable disciplinary action would be undertaken by the concerned state medical council or Medical Council of India," the regulatory body warned.
MCI in September 2016 amended the clause 1.5 of the Indian Medical Council (Professional Conduct, Etiquette and Ethics) Regulations, 2002 making it mandatory for every physician to "prescribe drugs with generic names legibly and preferably in capital letters".
If a medical practitioner is found to be guilty of committing professional misconduct, the appropriate Medical Council will remove the concerned practitioner name from Indian Medical Registry rendering him ineligible to practice.
MCI's latest notification assumes importance in the wake of Prime Minister Narendra Modi stating earlier this week that the government is contemplating to bring in a law that makes it compulsory for doctors to prescribe drugs by generic names against the existing practice of writing brand names in prescriptions.The proposed legislation intends to break the unholy nexus between pharmaceutical companies and doctors and to ensure patients get cheaper generics.