The parliamentary committee on health yesterday tabled its 109th Report and proposed National Licentiate exam to be merged with Final MBBS to be conducted at state level. They also proposed separate NEET PG exam. The report reads as

Taking all the above factors into account, the Committee recommends that the Licentiate examination be integrated with the final year MBBS examination and be conducted at the State Level. The final MBBS examination should be of a common pattern within a particular State, initially due to the logistical constraints, and could be extended across the country as the system streamlines. The Committee also recommends that the final year MBBS exam should be designed in such a way that it takes into consideration not only the cognitive domain but also the assessment of skills by having practical problems/case study types of questions as a major component, with a strong tilt towards primary healthcare requirements.

The Committee further observes that the theoretical examination should be a common short-question based examination for all final professional students at a level commensurate with the current final professional theory examination. The examiners for conducting the practical examinations should be external and to be decided through a lottery from an empanelled list of examiners. The Committee is of the considered view that making provision for the final year MBBS examination as the Licentiate Examination would test both the theoretical and clinical aptitude of the students. The Committee, therefore, recommends that the final year MBBS examination be considered as the Licentiate Examination.

Further, the Committee is of the strong view that if PG entrance and licentiate examination are combined, the students will concentrate only on performing in entrance examination, during their undergraduate days and internship. The Committee, therefore, recommends that the PG NEET for admission to PG courses may continue as of now as an interim management till a mechanism is evolved within three to five years for the conduct of a common final year MBBS examination which has an adequate structure, so that subjectivity in the theoretical examination is replaced by common problem/case study based MCQ type examination. The common final year MBBS examination may be conducted within a particular State by any State University/State Health University or any other suitable agency.

The Committee also observes that the NLE has also been proposed to serve as an instrument for post-graduate entrance. The Committee is of the view that a licentiate exam is a good instrument to maintain a minimum standard across all graduates. The Committee, however, is of the firm view that to use the same instruments for merit ranking for post-graduate entrance may not serve the purpose because a qualifying examination and a rating examination should not preferably be equated. The Committee, accordingly, recommends that necessary modifications may be made in the above clause to address its above-mentioned concerns.

MEDICAL REPORTERS

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