The Logical Indian Crew

Why Are Indian Students Choosing Universities Abroad For Medical Education?

Shekargouda, the father of the Indian student killed amid the Russia-Ukraine crisis criticized the Indian education system saying that his son scored 97 per cent in pre-university exams, and yet had to go abroad to study medicine.

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A pall of gloom descended on a Karnataka-based family on Monday after the Ministry of External Affairs confirmed the death of 21-year-old Naveen SG amid the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis. A fourth-year medical student in the Kharkiv National Medical University in Eastern Ukraine, Naveen had suggested to his friends that they leave the country on Wednesday to take their juniors along, who had been to the country for less than a year. Naveen and his friends survived on biscuits and juices packets for a few days before Naveen volunteered to fetch groceries for them. He became the first Indian causality in the Russia-Ukraine war.

Son Scored 97 Percent In PUC

Naveen's father, Shekarappa, who was a mechanical engineer in a factory, said that his son was a bright student and had scored 97 per cent marks in pre-university examinations. However, he could not secure a seat for medicine in India due to the excessive costs of the MBBS in the country. His death highlighted the major drawback in the Indian education system, which demands enormous costs from students for a professional degree. Over 18,000 students are stranded in the war-ridden country, and over 90 per cent of them are medical students.

As hundreds of students walked for miles to reach Poland and other countries for evacuation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged the private sector in the country to step up for medical education in India. Our country has more than 88,000 seats for MBBS every year, and over 27,000 seats for Dental studies, yet, students are choosing universities abroad. In comparison, 1.6 million candidates had registered for the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) last year, and in 2020, the figure stood at 1.3 million. The difference highlights the gap between aspiring doctors and the country's ability to train them.

What Is The Cost Of Studying Medicine In India?

Since 2014, the number of seats for MBBS has risen from a mere 51,000 per year, and the number of colleges has almost touched 600, from 387 in 2014. However, while the annual fees for the course in government colleges are ₹ 2 lakhs, it could rise to as much as ₹15 to 20 lakhs in private colleges. The cumulative cost for a four-year course reaches nearly ₹ 60-70 lakhs, which is too high for an ordinary person to afford. In Russia, Ukraine, China and the Philippines, the cost of education is lesser, and so is the competition.

A four-year course in Ukraine costs nearly ₹ 15-17 lakhs. Even though the cost is higher than the government medical colleges in India, the difference is exponential compared to private colleges in India. While the best students from the country to government colleges, the others who could not secure the seat land up in international schools like Russia and Ukraine.

Moreover, the students who return from colleges abroad have to pass the Foreign Medical Graduates Examination, which reportedly has a meagre pass percentage. Those who have studied in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and New Zealand cannot write the screening test. Even though the Narendra Modi government is looking forward to expanding the country's healthcare sector, the possibility of developing the colleges is not the best solution ahead.

Also Read: #NotWorthIt: Women Are Always The Worst Sufferers Of Armed Conflicts Across The World

Contributors Suggest Correction
Writer : Ratika Rana
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Editor : Ankita Singh
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Creatives : Ratika Rana