IMA is a duly registered association of doctors practicing modern system of medicine in all states/UTs of India. IMA has its own Memorandum, Rules and Bye-laws.
One of the objectives of IMA is to promote and advance medical and allied sciences in all their different branches and to promote the improvement of public health and medical education in India. Further, for the attainment of the said object, IMA can publish and circulate journal for the same.
In view of the above objective, IMA had published various advertisements in national newspapers thereby creating awareness among the public at large on various public health topics like Blood Pressure, Hypertension, etc. In the said advertisement, IMA is not promoting or endorsing any brand or company. Further, the said advertisement on public health published by IMA is not barred under the provisions of MCI Code of Ethics as the said Code of Ethics does not bar the publication of advertisement relating to public health awareness. In fact, as per the provisions of MCI Code of Ethics, the registered medical practitioner is allowed to publish under his own name on matters of public health, hygienic living or to deliver public lectures, give talks on the radio/TV/internet chat for the same purpose and send announcement of the same to lay press. It is pertinent to mention herein that IMA does not fall under the jurisdiction of MCI but as IMA is an association of doctors practicing modern system of medicine, so IMA always ensures that its working is as per the provisions of MCI Code of Ethics.
Thus, there is no illegality in publishing the advertisement relating to public health awareness and education.
Dr KK Aggarwal