All medical colleges will have to start PG courses by 2020
CHENNAI: In an attempt to increase the number of postgraduate medical seats, the Medical Council of India (MCI) has amended the admission regulations and made it mandatory for all medical colleges offering MBBS to start postgraduate courses by 2020-21.
The amendment, the council hopes, will increase the number of specialists such as general medicine and surgery, paediatrics, gynaecology and orthopaedics.
The medical colleges have to apply for permission to start postgraduate medical education courses within three years of grant of recognition or three years from the date of inclusion of the MBBS qualification, according to the Postgraduate Medical Education (Amendment) Regulations, 2018, notified on April 5.
If the permission is not granted for lack of faculty, human resources, patients, bed strength or infrastructure, the institution will be given two more opportunities to apply. Failure to make an application or obtain permission within the stipulated period will lead to withdrawal of recognition of MBBS qualification, it said. These regulations will come into effect from the academic year 2020-21, in order to provide time to existing colleges to apply, it said.
The MCI has more than 476 registered medical colleges with over 60,000 MBBS seats across the country. But the number of postgraduate seats — degree (MD/MS) or diploma — is less than 30,000. Even in states like Tamil Nadu that boast of having the largest number of government medical colleges, at least nine colleges don’t have PG courses. This year, with an addition of 157 seats, the state has 1,648 postgraduate degree and diploma seats.
The decision follows suggestions from the Union ministry of health and family welfare, said MCI vice-president Dr CV Bhirmanandam. “If we don’t push colleges to start higher speciality courses we will have a serious dearth of doctors. It is the responsibility of colleges and governments to ensure there are adequate PG seats in every state,” he said.
Tamil Nadu director of medical education Dr A Edwin Joe said the central policy would help state expedite its seat expansion plan. “The policy of the state is to have one medical college in every district, increase undergraduate seats by at least 100 every year and proportionately increase PG seats. The notification will add more vigour,” said Dr Joe.
Even colleges not yet recognised for the award of MBBS degree under the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 are allowed to apply to start PG courses in pre-clinical and para-clinical subjects such as anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, pharmacology, pathology, microbiology, forensic medicine and community medicine along with the admission of fourth batch for the MBBS course, and in clinical subjects such as anaesthesiology, dermatology, general medicine, paediatrics, ENT, ophthalmology, orthopaedics, obstetrics and gynaecology along with the admission of fifth batch for the MBBS course.
‘Private medical colleges can admit students directly for 50% seats’
In a boost to private medical colleges, MCI’s amendments now allow non-governmental medical colleges/institutions to fill 50% of the seats on the basis of the merit list prepared as per the marks obtained in National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test, after surrendering 50% to the state.
Admission through counselling will be done by the state-appointed committee for government after surrendering 50% seats to all India quota. Self-financing college affiliated to the state university will surrender 50% of the students through single window counselling and fill up remaining seats on their own based on NEET merit list.
“Until last year, all the admissions were made by the state authority. The seats were returned only when they could not fill it up after counselling,” said Dr GR Ravindranth, general secretary, Doctors Association for Social Equality. “While this is unfair, what is likely to delay the admission process in our state is inclusion of incentives for in-service candidates working in rural areas,” he said.
The notification retains that qualification in the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) will be mandatory for admissions but says in-service candidates may be given up to 10% of the marks obtained for each year of service in remote and/or difficult areas or rural areas up to maximum of 30% of the marks obtained in National Eligibility-cum Entrance Test. The remote and/or difficult areas or rural areas shall be as notified by state or competent authority from time to time, it said.
“Based on recommendations from the six-member committee the state released a notification for classification of districts. But rural areas are not included. It may have to be reworked,” he said.
sources : The Times Of India