- Competition Commission of Pakistan impose penalty of Rs 22.5 mln on medical colleges
Competition Commission Of Pakistan Impose Penalty Of Rs 22.5 Mln On Medical Colleges
The Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) has imposed a penalty of Rs 22.5 million on three medical and dental colleges for fraudulently claiming recognition by the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC) and offering admissions to students for 2013-2014 sessions
CCP conducted an inquiry into allegations of deceptive marketing practices, after the PMDC in its press release named twenty-two private medical and dental colleges, which had failed to meet its registration criteria for 2013-2014 and were therefore either not recognized, or had restrictions placed on offering admissions for the sessions 2013-2014.
The CCP's enquiry not only aimed to implement its mandate, but also to safeguard the interests of thousands of students enrolled in medical and related courses and save the lives of millions of citizens to be affected by the unrecognized medical education, said a press released issued by the commission.
The inquiry found eight of the 22 institutions named by PMDC to have misrepresented their recognition by PMDC through their websites, and omitted to communicate the restriction on their admissions for the year 2013-14, thus violating Section 10 of the Competition Act.
These eight medical institutions included: Pak Red Crescent Medical and Dental College, Lahore, Mohiuddin Islamic Medical College, Mirpur (AJK), Abbottabad International Medical College, Abbottabad, Independent Medical College, Faisalabad, Women Medical College, Abbottabad, Hashmat Medical and Dental College, Gujrat, Bhittai Medical and Dental College, Mirpurkhas Sindh, (BDS), and AJ&K Medical College, Muzaffarabad - AJ&K.
The order imposed a penalty of Rs 7.5 million each on Bhittai Medical and Dental College Mirpurkhas, Women Medical College Abbottabd, Pak Red Crescent Medical and Dental College Lahore for violating Section 10 of the Competition Act in view of the timings of their advertisements about offering admissions for 2013-2014 despite being restricted by PMDC.
No penalty was imposed on remaining Medical and Dental Colleges due to lack of evidence but they were strongly cautioned against advertising their recognition by PMDC when that recognition is either suspended or canceled.
The institutes that advertise programs in medicine and dentistry without the proper approval of the regulator benefit from the lack of awareness among students about the PMDC's functions and the value of its accreditation or recognition of a particular institute.
Such deceptive practices not only put the future of students at risk, but unrecognized institutes that continue to teach students may well fall below the teaching standards that are required to be maintained, playing havoc with the lives of potential patients that may seek healthcare services from under qualified doctors that received their education from institutes unrecognized.