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Medical Commission releases new norms for medical colleges

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on October 31, 2020 Published on October 31, 2020

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The National Medical Commission, in its first major regulation since it was constituted recently, has come out with a detailed list of requirements needed for setting a new medical college and also for those existing ones --which plan to increase their intake.

Titled as Minimum Requirements For Annual MBBS Admissions Regulations (2020), the notification issued on Saturday replaced the similar regulation issued by the erstwhile Medical Council of India in 1999, an official statement said.

“The new regulation shall be applicable to all new medical colleges proposing to be established, and to the established medical colleges proposing to increase their annual MBBS intake from the academic year 2021-22. During the transitory period, the established medical colleges will be governed by the relevant regulations existing prior to the current notification,” it said.

The new standards have been arrived at keeping the functional requirements of the institutions. These allow optimal and flexible utilisation of available resources and harness modern educational technology tools to facilitate moving towards quality education, even when resources are relatively scarce.

Among other things, the new regulation has removed the quantum of land required for setting up a medical college and its affiliated teaching hospitals. The notification defined the minimum requirements of space for all student centric areas in the institution and the functional areas required.

The standards outlined the sharing of all available teaching spaces by all departments (compared to the inflexibility in the regulations so far) thereby mandating all teaching spaces to be enabled for e-learning and also digitally linked to one another. This was only desirable earlier.

Rules and regulations

Under the new regulation, a well-equipped “Skills Laboratory” for training students is essential now. It also made a medical education unit must for training medical teachers in educational pedagogy.

The space required for library and the number of books and journals have been rationalised and reduced. As per the new regulation, there should be at least 30 books per student and the libraby should have at least five copies of each textbook included in the curriculum.

Recognising that a well-functioning hospital is at the core of medical training, the new regulation now mandates the availability of a fully functional 300 bed multi-speciality hospital for at least 2 years at the time of application for establishing a new medical college, a condition which was non-existent in the earlier regulation.

Similarly, there should at least four teaching beds per student in addition to beds available in emergency medicine department. This is a reduction of 10 per cent in teaching beds as compared to the earlier regulations.

Two new teaching departments have now become mandatory in all medical college hospitals for the training of undergraduate medical students. These include the department of emergency medicine (which has replaced the earlier casualty department) and the department of physical medicine and rehabilitation which shall fill a large gap for those in need of comprehensive rehabilitative care.

The new regulation has also outlined “desirable” and “aspirational” goals beyond the minimum requirements stated in the standards so as to stimulate medical institutions to strive for excellence. These elements will be considered by the National Medical Commission while rating the medical institutions in the country, the statement said.

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Published on October 31, 2020
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