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June, 15

Over 50% of MBBS top rankers pick general medicine specialty | India News

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MUMBAI: Postgraduate medical aspirants with top ranks are increasingly opting for general medicine and radio-diagnosis for their broad specialty. This year, 53 of the top 100 candidates in the first all-India allotment list for MD/MS admissions have chosen general medicine, followed by 35 for radio-diagnosis. The numbers were 47 and 32, respectively, in 2020. The remaining few chose dermatology, gynaecology and surgery.

A once popular branch, general surgery had merely four aspirants in the top 100 list. For many from the medical field, the list does not come as a surprise though. General medicine paves the way for specialisation in sought-after superspecialty areas such as cardiology, nephrology and gastroenterology, which require low investment and bring in early stability for doctors, whereas surgery requires more years, more labour, more commitment and a heavy investment for independent practice. Three years ago, paediatrics also saw five aspirants in the top 100, this year it had none.
‘No bond, higher pay’: Medical students prefer Delhi over other states

Data from the Medical Counselling Committee’s first list also shows that many prefer Delhi over other states. Delhi institutes don’t have any bond requirement, are cheaper and offer higher pay for residents, say doctors.
Dr Avinash Supe, former dean of KEM Hospital, said radio-diagnosis has been popular for quite some time. “Students these days also prefer branches of general medicine that have potential for medical superspecialty areas that give early income stability than surgical ones. Surgery, which was the most sought-after branch at one point, requires more commitment, more time and doctors eventually settle at the age of 35-40 years, while their counterparts in other branches have already settled,” said Supe. Surgery also requires heavy investment if someone is seeking to start independent practice, he added. Students are making smarter choices based on feedback from their seniors and colleagues.
This, though, does not mean that surgery seats are going vacant at postgraduate level, said Dr Aviral Mathur, president, Federation of Resident Doctors’ Association of India. “The top rankers are choosing general medicine and radio diagnosis, but towards the middle range, the choices even out,” he said, adding that a mere degree in surgery now is almost like plain MBBS and does not mean anything without a superspecialty, which has limited seats and severe competition. To appear for one more competitive exam acts as a deterrent for many, he said.
Dr Pravin Shingare, former director, Maharashtra’s directorate of medical education and research, said. “At one point, surgery saw a huge rush, but now it is courses like dermatology, radiology which are chosen by the creamier lot. On the contrary, surgery and gynaecology see hectic work hours and are more demanding and hence not preferred,” he said.





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