NEW DELHI: The pass percentage of foreign medical graduates, who return to India willing to serve as doctors, has been abysmally poor in last five years after a marginal improvement between 2010-13, response to a Right to Information query has revealed.
The figures shared by the Medical Council of India’s Board of Governors show that in 2018, only about 15% of the students who took the Foreign Medical Graduate Examination made the cut.
All medical graduates, except those, who get their degrees in the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, are required to qualify the FMGE and do a mandatory one-year internship in a recognised Indian medical college before they can get their registration in the country.
In 2017, it was just 11% and in the previous year, less than 10% of the students who took the test cleared it.
In contrast, between 2010-2013, over 20% of students who appeared in the test, qualified.
Officials in the regulator maintained that the poor pass percentage of such students is due to the inferior quality of medical education in countries like China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Georgia.
Students and medical education activists said the reason for this abysmal show was “unusually tough” screening test that was designed to fail more students.
“The regulator, in a bid to help private medical colleges in India, has traditionally kept the pass percentage low in the FMGE, since its inception in 2003,” said a third-year medical who had filed the RTI query.
“Why doesn’t the MCI introduce a similar screening test for graduates from private colleges who get admission despite poor scores in the National Entrance cum Eligibility Entrance Test?” he asked.
Ved Prakash Mishra, former chairman of the undergraduate committee in the MCI who headed a panel to introduce reforms in the FMGE, however, said that the test should remain as it is to ensure that “compromised” medical graduates are not allowed to practice as doctors.