The National Medical Commission (NMC), which regulates the medical education has clarified that online theory classes are valid for MBBS students.
“Online classes are valid and approved for teaching during current pandemic Covid-19 only,” Dr RK Vats, Secretary, National Medical Commission, said in a letter addressed to the heads of all the medical colleges.
He added, “Such online theory classes are required to be supplemented by practical and clinical training as per the current curriculum in all MBBS subjects in the Colleges/Institutions and affiliated hospitals as and when colleges reopen.”
Earlier, media reports had stated that Medical Council of India (MCI) disapproved online classes for teaching of MBBS curriculum.
The confusion cropped up over MCI’s response to an application under Right to Information Act in which a candidate had asked, if MCI has approved the online mode of teaching by foreign medical universities for the first semester.
The MCI in its response on August 13 said, “The Medical Council of India doesn’t recognize/approve any online teaching in MBBS on its equivalent medical courses.”
Dr Vats has clarified that the MCI’s response was “in reference to the conduct of MBBS teaching curriculum by foreign medical universities through online medium only.”
However, students, who are pursuing foreign medical education and currently in India due to various restrictions have questioned the dual criteria for online classes.
"How can NMC have dual criteria to allow online studies. The same condition should be imposed on foreign students also that they can take theory classes online which can be supplemented with practical and clinical training once colleges reopen and we are allowed to travel to our respective colleges in other countries," says a candidate pursuing an undergraduate medical course from Ukraine.