States Advised To Take Steps For Reopening Of Medical Colleges On Or Before Dec 1

New Delhi: State governments have been advised to take steps for reopening of medical colleges from December 1 or before, with strict adherence to COVID-related guidelines.

Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan has written to chief secretaries and administrators of states and Union Territories, suggesting that they make non-COVID beds available in affiliated medical college-hospitals to facilitate resumption of undergraduate training, The New Indian Express reported.

All educational institutions have been closed since the last week of March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In his letter dated November 25, the health secretary has stated that all SOPs/guidelines with respect to social distancing and prevention of spread of epidemic issued by Central/states and UT governments will be followed by all the colleges.

The directive comes in the wake of National Medical Commission’s (NMC) recommendation that medical colleges be reopened on or before December 1 for MBBS students already pursuing courses.

The NMC observed that that unless the current batch of interns complete their clinical training, they won’t be eligible to appear for PG-NEET exam.

The PG-NEET exam for 2021-22 has been delayed as eligible candidates will be completing their training late.

“Delay in resuming the training would have a cascading effect on training of next PG and super-speciality courses in the coming years. The delayed new academic session for 2020-21 should commence from February 1, 2021,” NMC noted.

Stating that the new PG session for academic year 2020-21 should begin from at least July 1, 2021, the NMC said that PG-NEET exam for 2020-21 will have to be scheduled “around March-April 2021”.

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