NEW DELHI: One fire triggered by the National Education Policy (NEP) 2019 might have been doused but a new one could be lit, as a controversial clause in the National Medical Commission (NMC) Bill that was dropped in the revised version, got loads of fresh oxygen in the draft.
The NEP draft has suggested that there should be a common exit examination for MBBS students across India.
The first version of the NMC Bill had suggested a national level licentiate exam for all MBBS grads in India. But it was dropped after strong protests by several groups of doctors, particularly the Indian Medical Association — the largest body representing private health practitioners in the country
‘Unnecessary burden on med students’
As a result, a revised version of the draft that was prepared after the Bill was sent to the standing committee on health in Parliament last year, dropped the contentious provision.
The NEP, unveiled three days back for public feedback, however has rekindled the debate.
“Just as the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test has been introduced as a common entrance exam for the MBBS, a common exit examination for the MBBS will be introduced that will play a dual role as also the entrance examination for admission into postgraduate programmes,” the NEP says.
“This exit examination will be administered at the end of the 4th year of the MBBS so that students are relieved of the burden of studying for separate, competitive entrance exams at the end of residency period.
The suggestion, however, is not going down well with many, just like the previous occasions.
“This clause is dangerous and undermines the autonomy of institutions,” said Ravi Wankhedkar, IMA member.
“If there is standardized medical education in the country, why is there a need for a common exit exam that will unnecessarily bog down medical students? We will oppose this.”