IMA criticises Govt's advice to delay oxytocin at childbirth

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IMA Secretary General Dr R V Asokan

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) has criticized the Indian health ministry announcement on delay in giving oxytocin to women after childbirth and demanded immediate withdrawal of the guideline.

The health ministry included its suggestion on oxytocin in an advisory notice sent to health officials throughout the country on November 6, 2019, primarily recommending delayed cord clamping, a practice widely accepted to be beneficial to newborns.

“Mothers are bound to die of bleeding due to this recommendation. Government will be responsible for their death and the compensation,” said a press statement of IMA.

“IMA would also want to point out that the word uncomplicated pregnancy is so vague that ultimately the doctors will be made the scapegoat,” it said.

The top doctor’s body suggested, “The government should keep their hands away from formulating guidelines for clinical situations. Best practices of medical profession are updated and revised by competent national and international professional bodies.”

Dr Santanu Sen, National President of IMA, said, “The Government’s credibility on oxytocin issue is not above suspicion because of their myopic stand on the distribution and regulation of oxyticon issue before the Supreme Court. Their advisory cannot be delinked from the bias on regulation and distribution.”

Criticising the advisory, IMA Secretary General, Dr R V Asokan, said, “The government has opened the floodgates of mothers dying in labour with its guidelines.”

He said, “Delayed or early cord clamping is a different procedure, again left to the judgment of the obstetrician. Active management of third stage of labour with oxytocin is a different issue."


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