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New MBBS curriculum in the offing

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From this August, the undergraduate medical students will have new syllabus, which has been revised after 21 years.

The new curriculum which got nod from the Board of Governors (BoGs) of the Medical Council of India (MCI) last year, focuses on mental health issues, clinical exposure, ethics, skill enhancement, and communication.

In addition, the new syllabus will make a shift from a theory-based approach to an integrated disease-based approach with clinical exposure right from the first year.

Media reports say that new curriculum, last revised in 1997, will also have provision, providing option to undergraduate medical students to choose Ayush (ayurveda, yoga and naturopathy, unani, siddha and homoeopathy) systems as an elective subject.

“We are moving to a more international style of teaching medicine, what is known as competency-based education or problem-based learning,” Dr Vinod Paul, the chairman of BoG and Niti Ayog member was quoted as saying.

“It will adopt an integrated approach, so from first year onwards we will start teaching diseases — say about 20 cardinal diseases in the first year and so on after that. Physiology and biochemistry will be taught in relation with those diseases. Clinical exposure will start right from the first year and there will also be community exposure. Medicine is not just about classroom teaching, it is also about how you interact with a patient, your bedside manners everything,” he further stated.

Also read: Mandatory 2-year Bond for MBBS students in Rajasthan

However, a section of medical teachers is not happy stating that many of key aspects are missing.

“Disability competencies for health professionals are missing from the document. The importance of empathetic non-verbal communication and unique medical problems associated with patients with disabilities has to be part of the new syllabus. Despite our submissions, after extensive consultation with stakeholders, we are taken aback by the fact that there is no mention of it in the actual document,” Dr Satendra Singh, disability activist and medical doctor at the University College of Medical Sciences and Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital, Delhi was quoted as saying.

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