Allopathy practitioners may be up in arms against the Maharashtra state government’s move to allow homeopaths to prescribe Allopathy medicines, but if the number of doctors registered annually across India is any indication, alternative medicine clearly dominates the scene. Of the seven lakh doctors who register on an average in India every year, only 3-4% are allopaths. Ayurveds and homeopaths make up the largest chunk.
There were nearly 13 Ayurveds and seven homeopaths registered in the country for every allopath who signed up with their respective medical councils in 2011, reveals an analysis of the latest data from the ministry of health and family welfare. In other words, there were over four lakh Ayurveds and two lakh homeopaths registered in India for 33,000-odd allopaths across the country.
Maharashtra state government decision is to allow homeopaths to prescribe allopathic medicines if they completed a one-year bridge course in pharmacology. But the doctors of Indian Medical Association (IMA) feel that it is a retrograde step. Doctors attached to Indian Medical Association (IMA) and Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD) wore black ribbons to flay the state government’s decision.
Allopaths feel all-India statistics reveal the government’s longstanding pro-AYUSH thrust at the cost of allopathic education. However, practitioners of alternative medicine believe the figures strengthen their demand for combined practice.