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In a move that will cheer up many MBBS aspirants, the Medical Council of India (MCI) in consultation with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has decided to grant one time exemption from the requirement of qualifying NEET for the academic year 2018-19.

Exemption to those who did not appear for NEET 2018:

It is important to note that the exemption is only for those who had not registered for NEET (UG) 2018.

Note: All the candidates can check the MCI notice.

As per a notification (no MOS/END/333/2018) procured, admissions for such students in overseas colleges will be subject to the following conditions:

  • The candidates shall furnish an undertaking that they had not registered for MEET (UG) 2018
  • The candidates shall obtain the eligibility certificate from the MCI prior to admission/joining the foreign medical institutes
  • The MCI may at its discretion verify whether such an undertaking is genuine or not.

In case, the undertaking is found to be false or forged, appropriate action as permissible in law, including cancellation of the eligibility certificate, would be taken against such candidates.

Here's what MBBS aspirants have to say:

Commenting on the government notification, an aspiring MBBS student Rajasekhara KS said, "I did not take any coaching for NEET along with my 12th standard curriculum because I was not at all considering studying in India. Reason being the high investment and low package once the course is completed."

"Students start preparing for NEET at least two years prior to it. The government announced NEET mandate only in February 2018 and the NEET exam was due in May 2018. Where was the time to thoroughly prepare? However, I am happy to know that I can now enroll in an MBBS college without wasting a year or so," the student said.

Further, the student intake for many overseas colleges will get over in September and this may be the final chance for MBBS aspirants to apply for admission.

"We have over 50 pending applications of students with excellent academic backgrounds but who did not appear for NEET exam this year. Many Indian students will be happy to learn about this positive development".

The Ministry of Health is considering merging the FMG exam with the National Exit Test (NEXT) which has been proposed to assess the quality of the MBBS pass-outs in the final year of medical undergraduation course.

The proposal of NEXT is contained in the National Medical Commission Bill, 2018, which is likely to be passed in the Monsoon Session of Parliament. The Ministry recently amended the draft law in line with the recommendations of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Health.

In another major reform, the Ministry has brought in changes to rules governing the eligibility whereby Indian students go abroad to study medicine and return to practise the same in India. According to new rules notified this month, students going abroad to study would no longer need eligibility certificates from the Medical Council of India if they want to study abroad and later return to India to write the FMG test and practise medicine.

The fate of the candidates of the candidates who want to pursue medical studies from any foreign university will be sealed soon as the judgment is awaited on providing a one-time exemption from NEET. A petition demanding no NEET qualification for MBBS aspirants planning to study medicine abroad is pending with the High Court of Delhi. The Judgment awaits and the hearing could be done anytime soon.

Today, if a candidate wishes to pursue MBBS abroad then they have to clear the FMGE (Foreign Medical Graduate Exam) exam even after completing their degree outside India and before starting their medical practice in India. Other than this, the candidate also has to appear in NEET exam.

“There is no need to have so many levels of knowledge test screenings. If FMGE is mandatory for foreign medical graduates then there should be no need for them to qualify NEET exam to study abroad,” says Radhika Madan, an MBBS final year student studying in a college in Russia to Aglasem.

There is a huge rise in the number of students wishing to study medicine abroad. This is being backed by the official data in response to an RTI filed to MCI in October 2018.

The number of students who applied for the mandatory eligibility certificate from Medical Council of India (MCI) to study medicine abroad almost doubled in the year 2017-18 from 2016-17.

As per RTI no. MCI- 201 (E-RTI)/ 2018- Eligi./, the number of applications received in the year 2017-18 were 18,383.  as against the number of applications for eligibility certificate received by MCI in the previous year 2016-17 which were 10,555. 

“Information provided in the RTI speaks volume on the shift in medical education trends. The key reason for this is the lack of medical seats in India. There is a total of approx. 60,000 medical seats that is being offered by both Government and private colleges for medical aspirants who are in millions. Apart from this, higher awareness levels of the overseas colleges, more affordable fees compared to Indian private colleges,  curriculum aligned to international standards, better global growth opportunities etc are other reasons why students prefer to study MBBS abroad.

In a major relief to a large number of MBBS aspirants, the Delhi High Court has declared that students who have not qualified the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) are eligible to enrol in an overseas medical college this year.

The High Court while hearing a petition of medical aspirants granted a one-time exemption.
The high court has asked the Medical Council of India (MCI) to issue eligibility certificate to aspirants within one week. The court observed, “this court hereby declares that the petitioners are entitled to the same treatment as was given to those who did not appear in NEET; as a one- time measure, the respondents are directed to ensure that eligibility certificates are issued to all students who appeared in NEET (including the petitioners) but did not qualify the test.”

“This is a major relief for me as I was depressed on the thought of wasting one year to enrol in a medical college. The High Court has paved way for many students like me who are good in studies but could not qualify NEET because of the pressure to perform in boards. I now have the option to enrol in an overseas college where the fees will be much lower and career prospects will be higher,”

However, in a major relief to the students who did not register for NEET this year, the Delhi High Court had recently announced a one-time exemption.


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