All about MBBS – To be considered as the most sought-after medical course, MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery) course, or in its Latin name, Medicinae Baccalaureus, Baccalaureus Chirurgiae, is the most demanding undergraduate course among Class 12 science students. Candidates, parents and guardians has accepted MBBS as the route to become a doctor of modern medicine in the country. MBBS being a predominant medical course, it is obvious that competition for the seat is intense. Through the data by Medical Council of India (MCI), it has been revealed that the total number of MBBS seats in the country is around 82,926, while the number of registrations for admission to these seats are more than 13 lakhs every year. While it takes clarity of thought, immense dedication and unending hard work to become a success in the profession, so many students are willing to put themselves through the grind of studying MBBS primarily because becoming a doctor is undoubtedly one of the most rewarding professions there is.Reopened: NTA will conduct NEET exam 2020 on July 26!
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MBBS Full Form | Full Name
Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery
5.5 years (4.5 year of academic + 1 year of compulsory internship)
Common entrance test
National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET)
On the basis of scores obtained in NEET
Average Course Fee
MBBS course fees varies for every colleges/institutes
Approximately upto 8 - 10 lakh per annum
Taking the case of Vinod Xavier. When Vinod had to choose his future course of study at the conclusion of Class 12, the then-17 year old was unperturbed as he had his sights set on one route only for as long as he could remember. This was because he was very clear about wanting to do something good for society, something that would visibly impact people’s lives. Apart from this, his favourite subject in school was Biology and the reason why he pursued PCB in Classes 11 and 12. MBBS post that, according to him, “was a given”.
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“I had a less than forty percent chance of getting through a MBBS course, given the level of competition involved. But unlike my peers, who kept aside various backup options in Engineering, I was very clear that I only wanted to apply for MBBS courses. Everything thankfully worked out and I haven’t regretted my decision for a single day,” Vinod, currently completing his DNB from Sagar Hospitals, Bangalore, and known among his patients as Dr. Xavier, recollects.
Unlike how it was for Dr. Xavier, Dr. Sreegopal M Prabhu’s decision to pursue MBBS was more a result of his unique family background and the expected pressure it led to, than any focused ambition from his side. “My parents are doctors, my elder sister is a doctor and naturally, the expectation was that I would follow them into the field”. A topper throughout his school days, Dr. Prabhu initially had his eyes set on the IITs. “I always assumed IITs were the best colleges in the country. The desire to become a doctor was not something that gripped me strongly”, he recalls.
However, circumstances had their own role to play and once he cleared the Kerala medical entrance with a good rank in 2009, the opportunity to join Government Medical College, Kottayam, proved too strong to resist. “I was still quite apprehensive about my decision initially. One has to undertake a painful amount of study to obtain a MBBS seat and it only gets harder after one joins. It is only much later that the important of studying so much dawns on you and you see why it is worth it”, he reveals.
As enunciated by Dr. Prabhu, the ambitions of becoming a doctor needs a lot of studious hard work from the early school days. Unlike in 2019, when Dr. Prabhu was preparing for the many different entrances that were prevalent then, entry to any MBBS course in India today is only possible through three entrance routes, which were National Eligibility cum Entrance Test, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS MBBS) and Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER MBBS).
However, in a press conference on October 4, 2019, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, the Minister of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) had announced that MBBS admissions in AIIMS and JIPMER institutes is now under NEET ambit. National Testing Agency (NTA) started conducting NEET UG entrance exams from 2019 onwards. Medical Counselling Committee (MCC) will organise the counselling session for MBBS admissions to 15 AIIMS and 2 JIPMER institutes in India through scores in NTA NEET 2020 result.
NEET is also the exam most in demand since it offers all the MBBS seats available in the country. Also, candidates who wish to pursue MBBS abroad must qualify NEET 2020 exam. As per the latest figures released by the NTA, as many as 14,10,754 candidates appeared for NEET in 2019 for around 66,000 seats on offer.
Till 2018, the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test, introduced in place of the erstwhile All India Pre Medical Test (AIPMT) in 2016, was conducted by the CBSE as a single window entrance on the first Sunday of May each year. However, following concerns raised by candidates on the pressure put on them to clear the largest MBBS entrance exam in one go or repeat another year, the National Testing Agency (NTA) has been set up by the Government of India and conducts the exam. NEET 2020 will be conducted in the last week of May, in offline mode.
Government college MBBS seats are the most sought after through NEET, followed by those offered in reputed Deemed Universities like Kasturba Medical College Manipal and Central Universities like Banaras Hindu University. The Armed Forces Medical College, Pune, is the only institute which shortlists students for its MBBS course through NEET scores but also conducts its own subsequent interview and selection process.
Apart from MBBS and BDS, NEET also offers admissions to all AYUSH courses and to other paramedical courses like Nursing in some states. All Government, Private and Deemed Institutions offering MBBS, BDS or AYUSH courses across all states (apart from AIIMS and JIPMER) can only hold admissions on the basis of NEET.
NEET exam details
MBBS Exam Name
Proper preparations the key
NEET, being the sole, MBBS entrance exam, require students to obtain at least 50th minimum qualifying percentile (40th for SC/ST/OBC candidates) in order to become eligible for a MBBS seat, the determining factor when it comes to securing admissions remains one’s preparation strategy.
According to Dr. Xavier, “Firstly, it is important to understand that qualifying any of the three medical entrances is more about hard work than anything else. So be consistent and disciplined in your preparations throughout Classes 11 and 12. Secondly, while it is true that most questions in NEET come from Biology, medicine is not just about this one subject alone. Be equally thorough in your Physics and Chemistry preparations as well. Go for coaching if possible since it will help in refining your understanding of the subjects and help you focus on what’s important”.
Studying the course
In a written reply in Upper House (Rajya Sabha), Shri Ashwini Kumar Choubey, informed about the amelioration in MBBS syllabus issued by the Board of Governors (BoG) in supersession of MCI. He notified that the changed MBBS curriculum has already been implemented from August 2019. New MBBS syllabus includes the foundation course, Skill laboratories, early clinical exposure, competency based curriculum.
Akin to Dr. Prabhu’s experience, it was difficult for Steve Babu to come to terms with the amount of studying required in his first year of MBBS as well. A student at the prestigious St. John's National Academy of Health Sciences (SJNAHS), Bangalore, Steve says, “For someone just out of school and entering college, the amount of studying that is required in the first year can overwhelm you. Anatomy, Physiology and Biochemistry are the three pre-clinical subjects one has to study and the amount of theory one has to absorb in these is of a very high volume. But if you can get through the first year, the second and third years will be a breeze relatively”.
Dr. Xavier agrees. “The second and third years are like the honeymoon phase for a MBBS student, given that there is very little theory to study. Rather, there is more practical learning. We have both clinical and para-clinical subjects during this time. Pathology, Pharmacology, Forensics, MicrobiolSogy, ENT, Opthalmology and Community Medicine are the main subjects, all relatively light when compared to the first and final years”, he says. This is also the time when students can engage more freely in the extra-curricular activities of their choice.
The final year once again sees MBBS students get back to the grind, engaging in the rigorous study of a wide range of clinical subjects like Surgery, Medicine, Orthopedics, Pediatrics, Radiology, Dermatology and Anesthesia as they prepare to become practicing doctors. This process is accentuated at the time of the one year internship, where MBBS students are in practice no less than doctors. “ You don’t treat patients till the final year and start only during the internship. In this sense, the internship period at the end of the MBBS course is basically one becoming a doctor. There are not too many responsibilities but you learn everything there is to know about dealing with patients. That feeling of progression from a student to an actual practitioner is quite amazing”, shares Dr. Prabhu.
The MBBS final year and internship period is also defined by preparations for the highly competitive medical postgraduate entrances, foremost among them NEET PG. National Board of Examinations (NBE) will conduct NEET PG 2020 exam on January 5, in computer based mode.
“Having a postgraduate medical degree means extra pay and extra prospects. A MBBS degree by itself does not have the value of yore. It is of course sufficient to sustain in rural areas where there is a paucity of doctors but not in cities”, says Dr. Xavier. “Even for a simple ear pain, people nowadays only want to see ENTs, for headaches a neurologist and so on”, adds Dr. Prabhu on a lighter note.
The Doctor of Medicine (MD), Masters of Surgery (MS) and Diplomate of National Board (DNB) courses are each of three years’ duration, while a PG Diploma course can be done in two years but requires an additional two years of study in MD or MS to hold the same value.
According to Steve,”Keeping aside the financial aspect of pursuing a PG course, one should choose the specialization based on their calibre and interest, which will be known to them during their internship period. If you are planning to pursue a MD, then General Medicine and Radiology are the most in demand. If you think you have good surgical skills, then you can go for MS in ENT, Gynecology or Opthalmology. If you are interested in lab work or teaching, you can opt for paraclinical specializations like Anatomy or Biochemistry. Then, there are emerging MD specializations like Nuclear Medicine and Radiotherapy. It all depends on your interest area”.
Of course as is usually the case for such a highly coveted profession, successfully completing the MBBS course and becoming a doctor is not without some hard challenges.
“Anyone who wants to become a doctor should come prepared with the mindset to study lifelong. You will have to sacrifice your social life since work can come calling at any time. The learning will never end and immense patience will be required”, adds Dr. Xavier.
“Only if you study better can you treat better”, agrees Steve, before adding,” You will have to be prepared to work long hours, deal with emotionally draining situations, be dynamic and good with people, and even learn new languages if it comes down to it”.
“Engineers are exactly like footballers in terms of shelf life. The years at the peak are limited and eventually, retirement beckons. Doctors, on the other hand, never get old. Experience is everything. As your age increases, so does the money and respect you command”, says Dr. Prabhu with a smile.
“The job security is unmatched. In other professions, you need to bolster your degree with a MBA, perhaps attempt to join the public sector and so on. Once you are a doctor however, you will always be in demand”, says Steve.
There is of course the adulation and eternal gratitude you receive when helping treat someone successfully or even saving a life. “Patients treat you like a god and the feeling you get when they say even a simple thank you cannot be matched in any other job,” says Dr. Xavier. “The job satisfaction is immense”, agrees Dr. Prabhu.
The MBBS family is also a very close-knit community, and it is not uncommon for doctors to rely on each other when it comes to saving a patient’s life, especially when it involves one of their own. “When you need any help, your seniors will always be there to advice and guide you. And doctors are very respectful and fiercely protective of each other. I remember my MBBS batchmate’s mother once had an accident and he was panicking on how to help her. Once the alumni came to know however, they took over the treatment and covered all the costs involved. More than the respect or the money, I think it is to be in the presence of that kind of humanity that I chose to become a doctor,” concludes Dr. Xavier.
MBBS stands for Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery.
Aspirants need to be minimum 17 years of age to be eligible for MBBS admission.
MBBS is all about studying the branch of medicine and surgery in the bachelor degree.
Since MBBS is an undergraduate course, aspirants need to be atleast 12th or its equivalent qualified. Read NEET 2020 eligibility criteria here.
No, you can study MBBS from abroad but you have to be a NEET qualified.
Yes, since the NEET is a common entrance test for all UG medical degrees, so you have to be NEET qualified for admission in private medical colleges also.
Yes, ofcourse, doing MBBS from any college doesn't matter. What matter is how you are performing in your medical academic session.
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Hello student cut off vary every year on various factors like the level of question in the entrance examination and total number of applicants in that examination so its difficult to predict the exact marks but as per previous year records aim for marks around 600 so that you can get a admission into government medical college.
For more updates refer to the link mentioned below -
Feel free to comment if you have any doubt
Hello student the advantage of ews category aspirants is that you can apply for seats which comes under Economically Weaker Section (EWS). 10 Percent seats in every medical college are reserved for ews category aspirants so you can get admission through ews quota. Cutoff vary every year on various factors like the level of question in the entrance examination and total number of applicants in that examination so its difficult to predict cut off.
NEET eligibility - candidates must passed or appearing class 12 with physics chemistry and biology with minimum 50 percent marks aggregate from a recognized board.
Dear Rigved, AFMC selects its students on the basis of NEET examination. After NEET, you must fill AFMC registration forms, after which you will be called for screening rounds and interview for selection.
For further detailed information, check out the link below:
I hope this helps you!
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