‘Mind your peg’, IMA to doctors

IMA has laid down certain rules for its member doctors such as no alcohol should be served in IMA meets and six grams (18 ml of whisky) is considered to be a safe dose of alcohol.

‘Mind your peg’, IMA to doctors

‘Practice what you preach’ is one saying that Indian Medical Association (IMA) has decided to follow by having an alcohol policy for its members.

In a first-of-its-kind directive sent to its members, the umbrella body of allopathy practicing doctors has directed its members saying it is the professional responsibility of each doctor to promote a healthy lifestyle.

“Doctors are “Brand Ambassadors of Health”, and as part of our professional responsibilities, we not only take care of the health needs of our patients, but also that of the community by advocacy of various public health issues. We prescribe a healthy lifestyle to our patients and emphasize upon the need to adopt healthy habits and lifestyle,” said Dr KK Aggarwal, national president, IMA.

He added that doctors have a responsibility to put into practice themselves what they teach their patients about healthy lifestyle. “It is also important that we maintain our dignity before the patients. A dictum was also laid down in the MCI Code of ethics regulations, which says that “A physician shall uphold the dignity and honour of his profession,” said Dr Aggarwal.

The IMA’s alcohol policy includes:

  • Both July 1 (Doctors’ day) and September 5 (Teachers’ day) are dry days and no alcohol should be served in any function as a mark of respect.

  • No social alcohol in company of non-doctors.

  • Six grams (18 ml of whisky) is the social and safe dose of alcohol.

  • No alcohol should be served in IMA meets.

  • If served, follow Six grams limit for relaxation, if can’t then, less than 10 gram per serving, no second serving in less than one hour and no more than two servings in one day, 50% for women.

  • IMA host should ensure that guests do not drive back, if they are served alcohol.

  • One standard peg = 10 g (1 ml alcohol = 0.8 g) = 30 ml of 80 proof whisky with 40% alcohol

  • 12 g = 360 mL beer, 150 mL wine, or 45 mL of 80 proof distilled spirits

  • Liver can metabolise 10 gm. of alcohol in one hour (50% in women)