Odisha medical body protests ‘inequality’ in NEXT

Odisha chapter of Indian Medical Association (IMA) claimed that introduction of NEXT for medical graduates would be unfair for students and a gross violation of democratic provisions.

Published: 03rd February 2017 06:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 03rd February 2017 06:39 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: Odisha chapter of Indian Medical Association (IMA) claimed that introduction of National Exit Test (NEXT) for medical graduates would be unfair for students and a gross violation of democratic provisions as it promotes inequality between Indian and foreign medical graduates.

Reacting sharply to the proposed amendments in Indian Medical Council (IMC) Act by Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry though Medical Council of India (MCI) to introduce NEXT, State president of IMA Dr Kshitish Chandra Mohanty demanded immediate withdrawal of the proposals.

‘’There is no justified basis as to why the uniform National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) being conducted for post-graduate study will be substituted by NEXT by amending section 10 (D) of the Act. Nothing will be achieved by introducing NEXT at the under-graduate level when the students, who have already qualified for MBBS course, are compelled to clear the exam only for their registration in MCI and eligibility to practice. It amounts to duplicity and conflict of interest,’’ Dr Mohanty pointed out.

The medical practitioners’ body is also apprehensive about the future of students who fail to pass the NEXT exam. The four and half years they spent in medical colleges will be a waste. When there is already paucity of doctors in the country, the association feared that failed students will be thrown out of the pool of doctors.

How will the NEXT be applicable for both under-graduate and post-graduate levels when NEET is already there for both the levels, wondered State secretary of IMA Dr Janmejaya Mohapatra.

Similarly, the proposed amendments in section 13 of the Act are to forgo the screening test for students who possess medical qualifications from foreign countries. ‘’This is in sharp contradiction to Indian students who are required to pass NEXT even after having qualified MBBS whereas foreign qualified students are not required to go through the process of screening test which was mandatory as per the Act,’’ Dr Mohapatra said.

Criticising the State Government for being indifferent, IMA members alleged that while AYUSH doctors are allowed to practice modern medicine after one year of bridge course, the MBBS pass-outs are compelled to clear one more exam to get licence to practice. 

The IMA has submitted a memorandum to the President, Prime Minister and Union Health Minister demanding not to amend the IMC Act.


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