Minister of Health Pavithra Wanniarachchi has appointed a five-member committee to look into the activities of the Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC).
The five-member committee comprises Specialist Dr. Hemantha Perera, former Dean of the Ragama Medical Faculty Professor Prishantha Wijesinghe, Specialist Dr. Anula Wijesundera, Specialist Dr. Maithree Chandraratne and Specialist Dr. Darshana Sirisena.
They have been advised to compile an independent report and present it to the Minister, with the latter looking to overhaul the SLMC shortly afterwards.
Speaking after appointing the committee, Wanniarachchi said, “The SLMC is an independent body that has been formed through an Ordinance aimed at protecting the rights of the patients as well as rendering a quality service to the public.
The SLMC is tasked with monitoring the quality of the service rendered by medical practitioners as well as their performance.
“As per the provisions contained in the Medical Ordinance, the final arbiter of all decisions taken by the SLMC is the subject Minister. I have received a spate of complaints concerning the SLMC’s conduct. One of the core issues had been regarding turning the SLMC into an independent institution and removing all obstacles placed in its path to provide a transparent service to the public.
Among other issues raised regarding the SLMC recently had been the decision taken by this body to withdraw the registration of a few internationally recognised universities, the continued delay in electing officer bearers to the SLMC, the decision taken to register certain medical practitioners who had not even met the basic qualifications of the SLMC, the continuous delay in holding examinations to register students who had obtained overseas medical degrees, and the hearing of complaints within the SLMC while overriding its own laws and regulations.