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Correspondence
35 (
6
); 380-380
doi:
10.25259/NMJI_35_6_380

Comments on Teachers Eligibility Qualifications in Medical Institutions Regulations, 2022

Department of Physiology, Fakir Mohan Medical College and Hospital, Balasore, India
Department of Physiology, Raiganj Government Medical College and Hospital, Raiganj, Odisha, India
Correspondence to: himelmkcg@gmail.com
Licence
This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-Share Alike 4.0 License, which allows others to remix, tweak, and build upon the work non-commercially, as long as the author is credited and the new creations are licensed under the identical terms.

[To cite: Mondal H, Mondal S. Comments on Teachers Eligibility Qualifications in Medical Institutions Regulations, 2022 [Correspondence]. Natl Med J India 2022;35:380.]

The Board of Governors (BOG) in supersession of the Medical Council of India (MCI) revised the guidelines for the promotion of medical teachers in India that were effective till 21 February 2022.1,2 The previous criteria are now replaced with the ‘Teachers Eligibility Qualifications in Medical Institutions Regulations, 2022’ published in the Indian official gazette on 22 February 2022.3 The current journey of a medical teacher in Indian medical colleges is summarized in an infographic available at https://doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.19387691.v1.

The major changes in comparison to prevailing guidelines are (i) removal of authorship order in a research publication; (ii) removal of credit for research projects; (iii) modification in accepted bibliographic databases; and (iv) increase in the number of required research papers by one for promotion from assistant professor to associate professor.

In the previous guideline, the first, second, third and corresponding authors were considered for credit for a research paper. In the new regulation, the text that relates to this has been removed from the clause. This may be a welcome move from the National Medical Commission (NMC). In large-scale collaborative work, there is the involvement of multiple researchers from several institutions. We presume that they all would get credit for their contribution to a publication. However, offering gift authorship may increase in the near future. This should be avoided and the corresponding author should be aware of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors criteria for authorship.4

Research should always be promoted in a medical institution for the overall progress of medical sciences in India. Those who have prepared a proposal and been funded by any national funding agency understand the vigour with what they need to plan, prepare and present the proposal to get the fund. If completion of the project needs a long time and some teachers’ promotion is due, the teachers need to wait for the completion, preparation of the report, and the publication of the manuscript for the promotion. Hence, the removal of the research project in place of publication could be avoided by the NMC.

The accepted bibliographic databases had a drastic change in the amended criteria set by the BOG in supersession of MCI where the much criticized database ‘Index Copernicus’ was removed from the accepted database.2 However, in that amended criteria, there were some punctuation errors, and inclusion of a non-existent database (i.e. Citation Index). The correct databases in the guidelines were Medline, PubMed Central, Science Citation Index Expanded, Embase, Scopus, and Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ). The ‘Science Citation Index (SCI)’ is no more maintained by the parent company— Clarivate™. It has been merged with Science Citation Index Expanded.5

This list could be carefully prepared and proofread before the final publication as it is the reference for medical teachers of the whole country.

The number of required papers was relaxed from two papers to one paper for an assistant professor to become associate professor in 2020 (effective from 17 February 2020 to 21 February 2022) notification. However, the current guideline again insisted on the two-paper norms with an underline mark to put an emphasis. Hence, the number of publications is an important factor for promotion. Authors should be careful before publishing their valuable manuscripts in credible journals that are indexed with an accepted bibliographic database. Many journals claim that they are indexed in certain databases; however, in fact, the journals are not indexed. The authors may use the guidelines available elsewhere6 for checking the current status of the indexing of the journal.

References

  1. , . Critiquing the revised minimum qualifications for promotion of medical teachers in India. Natl Med J India 2020:316-18.
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  2. . –Substitution in Clause 6, Schedule 1 (number: CG-DL-E-19022020-216263) . Available at https://egazette.nic.in/WriteReadData/2020/216263.pdf (accessed on 20 Mar 2022)
    [Google Scholar]
  3. . The Gazette of India - Extraordinary Part III - Section 4 (Number CG-DL-E-23022022-233681) . Available at https://egazette.nic.in/WriteReadData/2022/233681.pdf (accessed on 23 Feb 2022)
    [Google Scholar]
  4. . International Committee of Medical Journal Editors Available at www.icmje.org/recommendations/browse/roles-and-responsibilities/defining-the-role-of-authors-and-contributors.html (accessed on 20 Mar 2022)
    [Google Scholar]
  5. . Clarivate. Available at https://support.clarivate.com/ScientificandAcademicResearch/s/article/Master-Journal-List-Removal-of-SCI?language=en_US (accessed on 23 Feb 2022)
    [Google Scholar]
  6. , . Check indexing status of a journal. J Family Med Prim Care. 2020;9:3166-7.
    [PubMed] [Google Scholar]

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