In reform mode, MCI considers national exam for doctors

The Medical Council of India (MCI) is considering a National Licentiate Examination for doctors after the completion of their medical education. This comes in the wake of a vision document for 2015, launched to bring reforms in medical education in India.

At the concluding session of the National Consultation on Reforms in Medical Education held at Pramukhswami Medical College in Karamsad, Prof Prof S K Sarin, Chairman of the Board of Governors, MCI, said that such an examination will set the benchmark for Indian doctors.

At present, India does not have a common licentiate examination for doctors after completing their undergraduate degrees. Usually, the university or the college attests the doctors' degrees based on their performance, and after a year-long internship, the MCI awards them licences.

Dr Himanshu Pandya, a professor in the Department of Medicine at Pramukhswami Medical College, said: "These licences are given to doctors based on the results of the degree examination and the success during the internship. But an examination will test the skills of the doctor at a national platform, making the assessment of the medical education even better."

Prof Sarin said: "Assessing medical colleges could be done through these tests, which can be National Exit Tests."

According to officials, the proposal for such an examination will be reviewed in the coming days by various groups working under MCI.

According to the Vision Document 2015, the time frame for the implementation has been set for April 2013. The advantages of this examination has been stated in the document as "enhancing skill development and competency building for a basic doctor".

The proposed examination is likely to be online, and could be optional till 2017.

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