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Only NBA accredited pharmacy colleges eligible to run Pharm D despite AICTE approval

Peethaambaran Kunnathoor, Chennai
Saturday, January 13, 2018, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

All the AICTE approved pharmacy colleges in the country, which are currently running graduate courses in pharmaceutical sciences, are not eligible for conducting Pharm D programme from this academic year onwards although the programme has come under AICTE purview.

Institutions which are having accreditation from the National Board of Accreditation (NBA) under AICTE are only eligible to go with the programme or any other course approved by the technical council from 2018. However, the colleges which have been conducting Pharm D from the year 2008 without obtaining NBA certificate are unlikely to be affected by this provision in the regulations at present. Such institutions need to get accredited by NBA as early as possible. It will be difficult for many colleges to start the programme as a fresh course for want of NBA accreditation.

As per the Approval Process Handbook of AICTE, all B Pharm colleges can start Pharm D programme provided they fulfill all infrastructure norms including hospitals. If a degree college plans to kick off the course, Pharm D, from this year it needs to have NBA accreditation even though the institution has seven years existence. As per the conditions of AICTE, only the institutions which have completed seven years in conducting pharmacy courses are eligible to apply for NBA accreditation. Practical exposure in hospitals is mandatory for the students of Pharm D, both for PB and Regular.

There is strong criticism among the public that very few institutions in the country do have full-fledged facilities for education and practical training for running Pharm D. As per sources from PCI, there are 221 pharmacy colleges conducting this programme across India. But approval of AICTE was not there for this course till last year. All these institutions can continue with the programme on the condition that they will comply with AICTE norms in the near future.

Besides, these colleges need to comply with all the infrastructure requirements and improve them every year. The quality of education is another factor which the institutions need to focus on to stick on with AICTE approval. On the side of the students and parents, they can lodge complaints with the Grievance Redressal Cell of the AICTE if they find any violation of compliance on the side of college authorities with respect to infrastructure facilities or faculties or classes or any other absence of facility specified in the regulations. In the wake of such complaints, AICTE will take legal action, including cancellation of approval, against the violators.

Further, the technical education regulator can force the institutions for quality improvement in education and skill development of the students.

Sources from PCI reveal that 221 institutions in the country are having Pharm D programme, both for PB and Regular. Among them the highest number of colleges is in Andhra Pradesh where 58 pharmacy colleges conduct this course. In Gujarat seven colleges have the course. In Haryana the number is one and in Karnataka it is 43.

Kerala has 18 colleges and Tamil Nadu has 24. Seven colleges in Maharashtra, three colleges in Punjab and one college in Rajasthan are also running the course. Telengana is having 56, UP has two and one college in Uttharakhand. All these institutions are affiliated to different universities in each state.


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