The Indian Medical Association (IMA) – the country's apex body of healthcare workers started Friday morning with a nationwide strike that has since been joined by thousands of doctors from across India.
As part of the strike, the IMA has called a halt on all non-urgent procedures and surgeries between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. (local time). Emergency services like casualty, labour rooms, ICU duties, and urgent surgeries, however, will remain operational across the nation.
Calling the government's decision to allow Ayurveda doctors to perform certain surgical procedures a "retrograde step of mixing systems", the IMA bluntly condemned the centre's announcement.
On its official Twitter account, the IMA also posted video messages from senior doctors, including its national president Dr Rajan Sharma, who are strongly opposed to this "mixopathy" of allowing Ayurveda doctors to step into the field of modern medicine.
Message from Dr. Rajan Sharma, National President, IMA— Indian Medical Association (@IMAIndiaOrg) December 7, 2020
(Thread Message 1/3) pic.twitter.com/xV3fctICKV
As per the government order, Ayurveda medics will be required to get trained under qualified doctors of modern medicine before they can perform at least 58 kinds of surgical procedures.
The IMA, however, has urged all doctors to refrain from teaching surgical techniques to Ayurveda doctors.
Netizens also started the day by posting their opinions on the nationwide strike called for by the IMA. While some supported the cause, others did not.
Majority of India's doctors are striking today, a drastic step in the midst of a pandemic spread. Why?— Nidheesh M K (@mknid) December 11, 2020
Bcoz the Center Govt tried to bring a modernist twist to alternative medicine— it decided to allow PG Ayurvedic doctors to perform surgeries.
#doctorsstrike why government is giving everything to ayuredas doctor..are mbbs and bds proffesionals are not capable in their fields ..and if they trust them so much then give mbbs and bds doctors 2 day leave and cure their covid patients via ayurveda doctors only #IMA #IDA— Abhimanyu (@AbhiAbhi2992000) December 11, 2020
The announcement to allow Ayurveda doctors to receive training to perform some surgeries was issued by the Central Council of Indian Medicine, a statutory body under the AYUSH Ministry.