National Medical Commission (NMC) issued a public notice on April 23, 2021, regarding the draft of the regulations for Foreign Medical Graduate (FMG), 2021. According to notice, the draft of the regulations is published on the official website nmc.org.in for comments. These regulations shall be implemented in the country from the date of publication in the Official Gazette. The draft provides information regarding the eligibility criteria to practise medicine in India. Furthermore, the explains the concept of the National Exit Test (NExT) and the transitioning process for foreign medical graduates.
According to the NMC, the proposed regulations shall hereon be termed as “Foreign Medical Graduate Regulations, 2021”. According to the public notice, the eligibility criteria has been divided into two parts. The first part is for students who have completed their senior secondary education in India and are pursuing MBBS abroad.
Such candidates pursuing MBBS abroad must have passed the Class 12 exam from any recognised board in India with the minimum eligible marks. They must have had Physics, Chemistry, Biology or Biotechnology as their core subjects. These candidates must have also qualified the National Eligibility Entrance Test (NEET) UG exam to seek admission abroad.
The second part of the eligibility criteria is for candidates who have completed their senior secondary education and MBBS abroad. Such candidates must have completed a minimum of 12 years of schooling with Physics, Chemistry, Biology or Biotechnology and English as their core subjects. They must have also completed at least the first year of graduation in Science with subjects like Physics, Chemistry, Biology or Biotechnology (in case such an exam was held).
The candidates must have also completed at least 4.5 or 54 months of undergraduate medical training along with 12 months of internship in the same country where the medical qualification was awarded. The MBBS degree must have been pursued in the English medium.
The entire undergraduate medical education must have been pursued in the same institution in the same country and no other country including India. Even the internship must have been done in the same country. The license to practise medicine shall be valid for at least 10 years.
Aspirants who have completed their primary medical education and wish to practise medicine in India must qualify the Foreign Medical Graduate Examination (FMGE) for the time being. Once the regulations are implemented, FMGE shall be replaced by the National Exist Test (NExT).
The new examination shall comprise of two steps – NExT step 1 and NExT step 2. In the first step, FMGs must appear for an additional paper to test their knowledge about pre-and para-clinical subjects as well. These graduates shall also be required to qualify the screening test in India as part of step 2. They must do so within 2 years of acquiring the MBBS degree abroad.