The National Medical Commission (NMC) has allowed foreign medical graduates (FMGs) from the war-hit Ukraine to complete their remaining medical course from different countries as a one-time opportunity, the Rajya Sabha was told on Tuesday.
Considering the hardships faced by medical students who returned to the country due to the war in Ukraine, the NMC has devised a scheme as a part of which Indian students who were in the last year of their undergraduate medicine course and have subsequently completed their studies and granted certificate of completion of course/degree on or before June 30, 2022, are permitted to appear in FMG examination, Minister of State for Health Bharati Pravin Pawar said in a written reply.
After qualifying the FMG examination, such foreign medical graduates are required to undergo compulsory rotating medical internship (CRMI) for a period of two years enabling them for registration. "The NMC has conveyed No-objection to the Academic Mobility Program offered by Ukraine i.e. temporary relocation (for the period of conflict) to other universities. Under this relaxation, the FMGs returning from Ukraine are allowed to avail one time opportunity to complete their remaining medical course. The Degree may however be awarded by the University where they shall migrate," Pawar stated.
Through a notice issued on November 22,2023, the NMC, the apex medical education regulator in India, has extended the relaxation to such students for three months. Further, according to the Ministry of External Affairs, 5,715 Indian students are enrolled in Ukrainian universities in semester starting September 2023. Among them, 2,510 students are currently in Ukraine studying in offline mode, 2,952 students are studying in online mode and 242 students are studying in third countries under academic mobility programme, Pawar said.
Moreover, in order to increase the opportunities for medical education in India, the government has increased the number of medical colleges and MBBS seats. Under the centrally sponsored scheme (CSS) for establishment of new medical colleges by upgrading district/ referral hospital, 157 new medical colleges have been approved, out of which 108 are already functional. There is an increase of 82 per cent in medical colleges from 387 before 2014 to 706 as of now. The MBBS seats are increased to 112 per cent from 51,348 before 2014 to 1,08,940 as of now and PG seats have been increased to 127 per cent from 31,185 before 2014 to 70,674 as of now, Pawar said.