Who is a Medical Practitioner or Doctor?

Last updated on Jun 21, 2022

A Medical Practitioner is a professional who practices medicine through the study, diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment of any disease or injury or other impairments. As per Indian law, a registered medical practitioner is a person whose name is found in the State Medical Register of any State, and who possesses the required medical qualifications.1

However, a Physician is a Doctor with qualification of MBBS, or MBBS with post graduate degree/ diploma, or with equivalent qualification in any medical discipline. Only a doctor having a qualification recognized by the Medical Council of India and registered with the Medical Council of India/State Medical Council(s) can practice the  modern system of Medicine or Surgery.2

Qualifications

Doctors are registered medical practitioners under the law if they:

  • Hold recognized medical qualifications granted by Universities or Medical Institutions listed in the Indian Medical Council Act.3 A list of recognized universities can be found here.
  • Hold recognized medical qualifications granted by certain other Medical Institutions, also listed in the Act. A list of these institutions can be found here.
  • Enrolled with the State Medical Register4
    or the Indian Medical Register,1 and have received a registration number.

If the medical degree is from a foreign university degree, an Indian citizen possessing primary medical qualifications awarded by a foreign medical institution must clear a screening test,5 in order to be registered with either the Medical Council of India or State Medical Council. Further, you can find a list of  recognized foreign universities here.6

  1. Section 21, Indian Medical Council Act, 1956[][]
  2. Regulation 1.1.3, Indian Medical Council (Professional Conduct, Etiquette and Ethics) Regulations, 2002[]
  3. Section 2(h), Indian Medical Council Act, 1956[]
  4. Section 15, Indian Medical Council Act, 1956[]
  5. Section 13(4A), Indian Medical Council Act, 1956[]
  6. Second Schedule, Indian Medical Council Act, 1956[]

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