In what’s being described as the biggest bonanza for MBBS students in India, the Centre has okayed an additional 3,791 post-graduate seats in medical colleges from the academic year 2010-2011.
The will push up the number of PG seats from the current 13,503 to 17,294 in the new academic session across 22 states and Union Territories. Of these, 3,085 seats have been added to government colleges and 706 to private ones.
Admissions for PG courses across India start on April 26 and courses begin May 2.
“An increase in the number of PG doctors will have a multiplier effect and increase the number of teachers,” said Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad.
With this decision, the number of PG seats goes up to 17,294. “An increase in the number of PG doctors will have a multiplier effect and increase the number of teachers. Once we have more PG specialists to teach medical students, MBBS seats can be rapidly expanded,” said health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad.
These PG seats will be in addition to the 188 PG seats at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and another 220 at PGI Chandigarh, which are earmarked separately.
The Medical Council of India (MCI) regulates 300 medical colleges in India, of which the government runs 143.
“A programme for the upgradation of state government medical colleges though central assistance of Rs 1,350 crore has also been approved,” said Azad.
“Changing the professor-student ratio from 1:1 to 1: 2 has added 2,723 seats because one professor can now guide two post-graduate students,” said Dr Ketan Desai, president, MCI.
Also adding to the number was the rationalization of a section in the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Act, under which any institution – government or private – can now apply to start new medical courses or increase seats.
“All the seats increased because of the change in the professor-student ratio being allowed in government medical colleges,” said Dr Desai.
The MCI submitted its recommendations to the Health Ministry on Tuesday, following which the ministry will issue a final order by March 31.