Mumbai: A court of the Public Health and Family Welfare Ministry has now provided interim relief to Seawoods-based Neurogen Brain and Spine Institute by staying the deregistration notice issued to the institute by Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC).
Apart from issuing a stay against the concerned deregistration notice, Public health minister Tanaji Sawant slammed Dr Pramod Patil and cancelled his deputation to NMMC as the medical officer of health (MOH). Besides, the institute has also sought to file an FIR against Dr Patil.
The concerned deregistration notice had been issued by NMMC as it alleged that NeuroGen was “illegally conducting” and advertising stem cell therapy for autistic children for lakhs of rupees.
Medical Dialogues had earlier reported that the Director of NeuroGen had allegedly violated the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) guidelines by providing Stem Cell Therapy (SCT) treatment to more than 12500 patients of autism and cerebral palsy from 75 countries that costed between Rs 5 lakh to 10 Lakh.
Taking action, the civic health department revoked his registration after carrying out a number of inspections between December 26 and February 22, on complaints from patients that false promises were made by the NeuroGen Brain and Spine Institute in Seawoods for treatment of Autism. Many parents lost lakhs of rupees on treatment, but the result was not as promised.
Also Read: Stem Cell Therapy: NeuroGen director in soup for allegedly violating NMC direction
Last year, on December 06, 2022, the National Medical Commission (NMC) directed that Stem Cell therapy was not recommended as a treatment for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in clinical practice. The Commission had also mentioned that the use of Stem Cells in ASD, its promotion, and advertisement would be considered as professional misconduct.
Referring to this, Dr. Patil of NMMC had issued a deregistration notice to NeuroGen pointing out that using stem cell therapy for treatment for autism and cerebral palsy was violating the guidelines of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). NMMC medical officer health Dr Pramod Patil had stated, “Our action was taken after detection of violations followed by complaints and after serving notice. More action is likely to follow with regards to misuse of stem cell therapy and professional misconduct.”
“The hospital will soon be sealed and face other actions as per law,” civic officials had mentioned.
Following the action taken by NMMC, the director of NeuroGen, Dr. Alok Sharma had appealed before the Ministry on April 5, 2023. As per the latest media report by Hindustan Times, now a court of the Public Health and Family Welfare Ministry has now provided interim relief to NeuroGen and stayed the deregistration notice issued to the institute.
Apart from this, the court further mentioned in the order that a proposal for deputing a new MOH to replace Dr. Patil has been initiated. The order of the Minister further mentioned that a special committee comprising medical practitioners will probe the process.
While commenting on this, NMMC Commissioner Subhash Narvekar mentioned, â€œThe state has decided to cancel Dr Patilâ€™s deputation and a new official is to be designated for the post.â€�
â€œIn the wake of the arbitrary action by the MOH, we appealed before the ministry and have got a stay on the notice with immediate effect. There are specific clauses as per the Bombay Nursing Act to be adhered to before deregistering any medical institute, and none of these were followed, thereby making the whole exercise irrelevant and done with a malafide intention to defame the institute,â€� said Dr Sharma.
Also Read: NMC slams Stem Cell Therapy for treating Autism Spectrum Disorder, declares it as Professional Misconduct
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