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On 22nd July, Monday, the National Medical Commission Bill was presented in the Parliament. The bill sought to replace the existing Medical Council of India (MCI) with National Medical Commission (NMC). Apart from the replacements, the bill scraps the much-criticised NEET-PG examination to replace it by an examination called ‘NEXT.’ NEET PG until now was the entrance cum eligibility test for admissions in the PG courses of medical science colleges across India.
However, NEET UG examination, which is the Undergraduate medical entrance test for admissions in MBBS and BDS courses and NEET SS for PG super-speciality admissions will remain as they were without any changes.
Previously, the students had to give a mandatory exit examination for medical which is Exit Test or National Licentiate Exam (NLE), however, the examination received much criticism as NEET PG was also being conducted for Post-graduate admissions in the country. The National Medical Commission (NMC) bill seeks to implement just one common examination for MBBS exit and PG entrance courses which is National Exit Test, or NEXT which is mentioned in the Draft Medical Policy of 2019.
NEXT is decided to be a multipurpose examination. The examination will not only make the students eligible for PG level medical course admissions but also, the NEXT exam will be held for granting the licence to practice medicine for the students as medical practitioners and to enrol in the State Register or National Register.
The NEXT examination will also cater to the State Register and Nationa Register licence aspirants who have a foreign medical degree. The NEXT will be conducted to check their eligibility for the licence as well.
A Bridge Course for AYUSH practitioners was mandatory to practice modern medicine to some extent, a provision which was introduced in the NMC Bill of 2017, has been removed in the current bill.
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