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Become a Doctor in India : Medical Education System in India Overview

Become a doctor and change your life and people around you. Perhaps, there is no other career which commands such a respect and awe as medicine. The power to heal has placed the medical profession several rungs above all others. A doctor's profession involves a lot of hard work with a good degree of dedication and at the same time, it also brings with it the satisfaction of having cured people suffering from illness, disease and trauma.

A simple degree in medicine is however not enough for making a successful and a satisfactory career. One needs to do specialization in any of the branches of medicine or surgery to become a specialist of certain kind e.g. Pediatrics, Ophthalmology, Gynecology, Surgery, Neurosurgery, Neonatology etc.

Medical Apex Bodies of India

These are the apex Bodies that governs the Medical Profession and allied services in the country.

  • Medical Council of India (MCI)
  • Dental Council of India (DCI)
  • Pharmacy Council of India (PCI)
  • Veterinary Council of India (VCI)
  • National Board of Examination (NAT Board)

Basic Pattern of Medical Courses

  • Undergraduate Courses
  • Postgraduate Courses
  • Super Specialty Courses

MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery)
This program is a 512 years course divided into three professionals of three semesters each. A semester comprises of 18 months. A wide range of subjects like anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, microbiology, pathology, pharmacology, forensic medicine, general medicine, surgery, ophthalmology, ENT (ear, nose, throat), gynecology, orthopedics as well as preventive and social medicine are taught. The last 1 year is devoted to compulsory rotating internship.

BDS (Bachelor of Dental Sciences)
This program is of 4 years duration followed by 1 year compulsory rotating internship. A wide range of courses like basic anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, pharmacology and microbiology are taught. Specialization in dentistry and hands-on-practice are during the two final semesters.

BHMS (Bachelor of Homoeopathic Medicine & Surgery)
This program is of 512 years duration including one year compulsory internship. The Homoeopathic Education in India is presently monitored by the National Institute of Homoeopathy, which is a statutory Central Government body.

BAMS (Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery)
This program is of 512 years duration. The Ayurvedic Education in India is presently being monitored by the Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM), which is a statutory Central Government body.

BUMS (Bachelor of Unani Medicine & Surgery)
This program is an undergraduate degree course in Unani Medicine & Surgery. The Unani Education in India is being monitored by the Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM), which is a statutory Central Government body.

BVSc. & AH (Bachelor of Veterinary Sciences & Animal Husbandry)
This programme is a 512 years course in Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry. The Veterinary education in India is being monitored by the Veterinary Council of India.

B. Pharm. (Bachelor of Pharmacy)
This program is a 4 years degree course in pharmacy. The course prepares eligible professionals for pharmaceutical industry. These professionals are in great demand in India and abroad. The monitoring work is being carried out by the Pharmacy Council of India.

B. Sc. - Nursing (Bachelor of Science in Nursing)
The duration of B.Sc. nursing course varies between 3 to 4 years. Specialization in Operation Theatre, Cardiac Care and surgery are also available. In India, Nursing Council of India is the Governing body for this program.

BPT (Bachelor of Physiotherapy)
This program is a graduate degree course offered by different medical colleges of the country. During the course, one learns the scientific procedures used in the treatment of a patient with disability, disease or injury to achieve and maintain functional rehabilitation .This program also focuses on prevention of malfunction or deformity.

BOT (Bachelor of Occupational Therapy)
This program is a graduate degree course in occupational therapy which is offered by different medical institutes of the country. The programme prepares professional therapists who help people with physical or mental disabilities in achieving maximum functioning and independence at home and at the workplace.

BMLT (Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Technology)
The B.Sc. programme in medical laboratory technology is offered by differed medical colleges/institutions across the country. The degree awarded is B.Sc.-M.L.T. The medical technologists are an integral part of the medical profession These professionals get involved in practical and technical work to aid correct diagnosis and in the functioning of Biochemical Laboratories.

Postgraduate Courses

MD (Doctor of Medicine)
This program is 3 years course that leads to postgraduate degree in medicine. Doctors possessing MBBS degree are eligible to for this course. This program is a specialized program in general medicine. A doctor after successful completion of this course is eligible to work as a Physician.

MS (Master of Surgery)
This program is 3 years course that leads to postgraduate degree in surgery. Doctors possessing MBBS degree are eligible to for this course. A doctor after successful completion of this course is eligible to work as Surgeon.

Post Graduate Diploma
Post Graduate diploma program in medicine is offered by various medical colleges or institutions across the country for MBBS degree holders. The duration of the program varies from 2 to 3 years.

Super Specialty Courses

DM / MCh
DM is a super specialty program in medicine of 2 to 3 years duration. The entry requirement for this course is MD (Doctor of Medicine)

M.Ch is a 2 years super specialty program in surgery. The entry requirement for this course is MS (Master of Surgery)

General Procedure for Admissions to Under Graduate Courses

Medical colleges in India all private as well as government medical institutes, for admissions, follow the eligibility criteria prescribed by their respective university. However, in general terms the candidates seeking admission to a medical college should have passed Senior Secondary Examination of CBSE (Central Board of Secondary Education) or its equivalent with physics, chemistry, and Biology.

Most of the Government Medical Colleges offer admissions to Indian students on the basis of their performance in a competitive entrance test; however, few Government Medical Colleges have some quota for NRI/Foreign students. The NRI/Foreign students willing to get admission in a medical college or university/ institute may contact the concerned authority directly for procedural details.

Different state boards conduct entrance exams for admission in the medical colleges and hospitals on behalf of the state government. Various autonomous medical colleges and hospitals also conduct their own entrance test examination for entry.

Education Qualification: 10+2 or equivalent with physics, chemistry and biology from any recognized Indian board.

Entrance Exam: The candidates have to appear in the written entrance examination for admission in the medical colleges and hospital as suggested by the entrance exam conducting board. A candidate may also have to appear in the interview test / personality test etc. if asked by the examination conducting board.

The exact pattern of entrance examination, syllabus and interview/personality test (if any) is published by the board in the information brochure which is made available on sale with the application form.

Result: The merit list of the successful candidates who are eligible for admission is declared by the board of examination.

Final Selection: Candidates are called for counselling by the concerned authority; where one has to go for the submission of certificates, course fee, physical tests etc.

After successful completion of the process as fixed by the concerned board an aspiring candidate can take admission in the medical college and hospital allotted by the board leading to a medical degree.

Entry Requirements (Eligibility Criteria)

Candidates who have passed 10+2 exam with physics, chemistry and biology(Zoology & Botany) are eligible for admission into MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine & Bachelor of Surgery) course. Selection for the course is through all India competitive entrance examination or state level competitive entrance examination.

The all India entrance exam conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), New Delhi. And state level entrance exam is conducted by the designated authority of the state for the purpose. Candidate must be an Indian National for admission through All India Entrance Exam or where of the concerned state where he/she wants to take admission.

There are also separate examinations conducted by various deemed universities and autonomous organisations for the purpose of medical education and training.

Medical Entrance Examination

Admission in the different medical colleges and hospitals of the country for the purpose of producing medical professionals is done through various entrance examinations. These entrance examinations are conducted by the conducting boards or organizations at All India Level or State Level.

The purpose of conducting these entrance examinations is selection of candidates for admission in the different medicine courses available in different medical colleges & hospitals at diploma, degree, post-diploma, postgraduate degree and research level.

Generally the entrance examination for admission in the diploma and degree courses is held separately at all India level and state level. However, the entrance examination for admission in the post graduate degree and research programmes is done on an all India basis or state basis.

Specializations in Different Streams of Medical

Specializations in different streams of medicine are available in a number of disciplines. We are discussing in general a few of them here.

An MBBS doctor who specializes in medicine and acquires an MD (Doctor of Medicine) degree becomes physician. A physician job is to understand patient’s problems, study the results of clinical tests, diagnosing the illness and then prescribing the course of treatment.

A medical doctor who specializes in Pediatrics is called Pediatrician. A pediatrician deals with the children’s health from newborn to adolescents. A pediatrician diagnoses and conducts treatment of the disease peculiar to children.

Cardiology deals with disorders of the heart. A Cardiologist performs specialized work like angiography, angioplasty etc.

Obstetrics and Gynecology:
Obstetricians and Gynecologists diagnose and treat the disorders in female reproductive organs. Obstetricians and Gynecologists also conduct operations like caesarian, laparoscopies and hysteroscopies. These specialists also deal with ovarian cancer and other illnesses related to reproductive systems.

Neurosurgery is the surgical discipline focused on treating the central and peripheral nervous system. Neurosurgical conditions include primarily brain and spinal cord disorders. The medical doctors specialized in this field are called Neurosurgeons.

Orthopedic surgeons deal with illness of the skeletal structure. They diagnose and treat fractures and disorders of the skeletal frame. An orthopedic suggests therapies and exercise for patients which are conducted by Physiotherapists.

Ophthalmologists diagnose and conduct treatment for the diseased human eye. Ophthalmologists are trained to conduct surgeries of the eye, operations for the removal of cataract, treatment of glaucoma and other such diseases and infections of the eye.

A medical doctor who has specialized in Psychiatry is called Psychiatrist. A psychiatrist treats mental, emotional or behavioral disorders.

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