All currently existing medical colleges have to initiate post graduate courses from the upcoming academic year of 2020-21.
This is a result of the Union Health Ministry approval of the amendments to the Post-Graduate Medical Education Regulations (PGMER), 2000, of the Medical Council of India (MCI).
Every year, India has the provision of 38,000 post-graduate seats for over 68,000 MBBS graduate students who come out of college.
The new amendments will be applicable to all existing government and private colleges as well as to new medical colleges. These colleges, within three years of recognition for providing undergraduate courses, will have to provide post graduate courses as well.
The details of the new regulations passed will be revealed soon. Colleges that fail to abide by these new rules will end up losing their recognition. The Medical Council will be conducting an inspection before it decides on increasing the number of seats for the 2019-20 academic year.The colleges are expected to comply and will have to apply for new seats for initiating the post-graduate courses.
The Finance Minister, on February 1, 2018, in his Annual Budget presentation mentioned a total increase of 8,058 seats with 4,058 in Phase-I (2018-19) and 4,000 in Phase-II (2020-21). The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, gave its consent for the increase of post-graduate seats in Phase-II. The budget for this project involves a total of 3,024 crore rupees central share, to be spent till 2021-22.
The Union Ministry’s decision is with regards to the concern of the government over the severe scarcity of specialist doctors in the nation. It is believed that the implementation of the amendments will create a space for about 10,000 more post-graduate seats over the next four years.
Dr. KK Talwar, Former Chairperson of MCI, and Former Director of the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, said, “Increasing PG seats is necessary because many students don’t take up medicine, thinking there is only a 50% chance of their doing PG. But the government must ensure that the quality of training is not compromised.”