QR Codes to Be Used for Doctor Authentication in Maharashtra

Dr. Vinky Rughwani, an administrator at MMC, explains that anyone visiting a doctor can scan the QR code to verify the doctor's qualifications
Dr. Rughwani noted that past measures were taken to address this issue, and the QR code project is the latest step. (Representational image: Pixabay)
Dr. Rughwani noted that past measures were taken to address this issue, and the QR code project is the latest step. (Representational image: Pixabay)

In Maharashtra, it is going to become much simpler to confirm the authenticity of the doctor. Clinics and hospitals will soon have QR codes on display that you can scan to verify a physician's credentials. The Maharashtra Medical Council (MMC) is leading this effort, which attempts to take tough measures against unregistered practitioners.

Dr. Vinky Rughwani, an administrator at MMC, explains that anyone visiting a doctor can scan the QR code to verify the doctor's qualifications. This action is part of a larger initiative to stop the increasing number of fake physicians. There are currently 1.8 lakh registered doctors with the MMC, but increasing reports of fake practitioners have inspired them to take this new measure.

Patients have complained about not recovering after treatments from unqualified doctors. Dr. Rughwani noted that past measures were taken to address this issue, and the QR code project is the latest step. Previously, the MMC issued registration certificates with individual QR codes to prevent forgery and tampering.

Dr. Sandeep Yadav, Chairman of the Diagnostic Committee at the Indian Medical Association (IMA), welcomed the initiative but stressed the need for regular meetings of committees at district and municipal levels to prevent bogus practices. He highlighted that in Sangli, several laboratories were run by technicians instead of qualified pathologists. Proactive strategies are essential to stopping such illegal activities.

Previously, the MMC issued registration certificates with individual QR codes to prevent forgery and tampering. (Representational image: Unsplash)
Previously, the MMC issued registration certificates with individual QR codes to prevent forgery and tampering. (Representational image: Unsplash)
However, it is important that committees set up to check and prevent the practice of bogus doctors at the district and municipal levels meet regularly. For instance, in Sangli, we found that there were several laboratories that were not run by pathologists and were managed by technicians. Committee members need to proactively design strategies to prevent such illegal practices
Dr. Sandeep Yadav, Chairman, Diagnostic Committee, Indian Medical Association (IMA)

Dr. Sanjay Patil, state secretary of IMA’s Hospital Board of India, pointed out that bogus doctor cases are more common in rural areas. He mentioned that, thanks to efforts by the civic health department and the IMA, awareness and vigilance have increased in urban areas.

The issue of fake doctors is not new. Recently, the Pune Municipal Corporation's health department registered a case against a man running a clinic in Karvenagar without being registered with any medical council. Dr. Suryakant Deokar, an assistant medical officer, said the man prescribed ayurvedic and allopathic medicines without proper qualifications.

Dr. Amit Dravid, an infectious diseases consultant, emphasized the need for sterner measures against quackery. He suggested that, beyond the QR code initiative, there should be stricter enforcement of displaying doctors' registration numbers and degrees at clinics and on prescription pads.

It is important to get tough about quackery. Multiple issues need to be addressed; right from ensuring that the doctor’s registration number and degrees are displayed at the reception desk and on his/her prescription letter pad. Beyond this QR code initiative, more strategies need to be sternly implemented to check the malpractice
Dr. Amit Dravid, Infectious Diseases Consultant

In addition to preventing fake doctors, the IMA has also issued an advisory on fire safety in hospitals. Dr. Dinesh Thakare, president of IMA Maharashtra, stressed the importance of safety measures, especially in ICUs where patients are often on life support. Hospitals are advised to get fire NOCs, set up safety committees, appoint fire safety officers, and establish emergency command centers. Proper signage, tested fire alarm systems, and visible fire exits in multiple languages are also part of the advisory.

Fires at hospitals can be devastating, especially where a large number of people admitted in ICUs may be on life support, and incapable of moving on their own. They need to be evacuated hence there are special requirements that must be met while evacuating such people in case of fire emergencies
Dr. Dinesh Thakare, President of IMA Maharashtra

The advisory follows several recent incidents involving electrical connections, gas leaks, and fires in hospitals. The IMA is urging hospitals to take these precautions seriously to prevent future incidents.

(Input from various sources)

(Rehash/ Susmita Bhandary/MSM)

Dr. Rughwani noted that past measures were taken to address this issue, and the QR code project is the latest step. (Representational image: Pixabay)
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