Education and a good career are frequent thoughts in the minds of many parents and teenagers. While the options are varied and many, a career that never ceases its charm nor the advantageous prospects are being a doctor. Let us delve into MBBS as a career option, its various branches, and preparations. Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery is the full form of MBBS, which is taken from the Latin phrase Medicinae Baccalaureus Baccalaureus Chirurgiae. This undergraduate program is the first step into the mesmerising, challenging, and aspirational journey into the world of medicine and medical science.
Know all about MBBS
MBBS is a 5-year undergraduate program in India. The 5 year program culminates into a one-year internship program which gives hands-on experience to the students. Further to the graduation program, students can then opt for post-graduation programs, popularly known as MD or MS. In these programs, you can then select the field of choice like medicine, pathology, etc. The knowledge learning may further lead the students to do super specialisation streams. Getting an MBBS degree is the first step towards studying general medicine and once the student is aware of the branch of interest, further post-graduation is helpful.
Eligibility for the MBBS program
To be eligible to apply for the program, the students have to opt for the science stream after class 10th. The more specific criteria are as follows:
- The study of physics, chemistry, and biology is mandatory.
- The age of the student must be between 17-25 years. The age is relaxed by 5 years for students from the reserved category.
- 50 % marks must be obtained in the 12th standard exams, though the criteria are 40 % for students in the reserved category.
- Clearing the NEET (National Eligibility cum entrance test) is mandatory for all students and no exception is made for the reserved category.
What is NEET- details explained
NEET-UG is the exam students have to clear to get admission into medical college. The test is mandatory even for foreign nationals who choose to study MBBS in India. With the exception of AIIMS (All India Institute of Medical Science) and JIPMER MBBS, every other college accepts the NEET score of the students. Since the above-mentioned institutes conducted their own exams in the past, if a student wants to enroll in either of these colleges, recommend to check the website or with the colleges if the NEET scorecard is accepted in current times. Students who have done their MBBS and chose to do their Post-graduation, appear for the NEET PG exam.
What is the paper pattern for the NEET exam to join MBBS?
NEET is a 3-hour exam with a total mark of 720. There are multiple-choice questions with 4 marks for every right answer and a negative 1 mark deduction for every wrong answer. A student can appear in the exam in any of the languages like English, Hindi, Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Oriya, Kannada, and Urdu. The paper is of 200 marks and the students have to attempt only 180 questions in the stipulated time frame.
Admission process for the MBBS program an overview
There are 89 plus MBBS seats available all over India as recognised by the National Medical Commission (NMC). Once the NEET UG score is declared, students then have to apply for the counselling sessions. The sessions are based on the NEET scores and the students are updated on the various vacant seats in the 400+ medical colleges in India. The choice of college also depends on the fees. Many students choose government colleges as compared to private colleges due to the difference in fees structure. In a private college, course fees could be as high as 1 cr per year.
Top most sought-after medical colleges in India
AIIMS (Delhi) is the most sought after college in India, followed by colleges like Christian medical college – Vellore, Armed Force medical College – Pune, JIPMER – Puducherry, Grant Medical College – Mumbai; Madras medical college – Chennai, and Kasturba medical college – Manipal, to name a few.
Syllabus of the MBBS program in a nutshell
The syllabus is divided into 3 phases namely Pre-clinical, Para-clinical, and Clinical. The overview is given below for a better understanding
- Phase 1 – Pre-clinical: semesters 1 and 2 are a part of this phase and subjects studies are Anatomy, Biochemistry, and Physiology
- Phase 2 – Para-clinical: Semesters 3-5 are covered in this phase. The subjects covered are Community Medicine; Forensic Medicine, Pathology, Pharmacology, and Microbiology. In this phase, clinical postings are awarded to students to get real-time experience. Rounds to the OPDs are also introduced in this phase.
- Phase 3 – Clinical: Semesters 6-9 is a part of this phase. Introduction to various branches of medicine are introduced in these semesters like Community Medicine, Medicine and allied subjects (Psychiatry, Dermatology), Obstetrics and Gynaecology; Paediatrics. Branches of medicine for surgery like Anesthesiology, ENT, Ophthalmology, Orthopaedics are also introduced.
Once these semesters are covered, a clinical posting or internship for 1 year begins. Internships happen in various departments for a few months. The internship also includes rural postings.
Career opportunities after successful completion of MBBS
After successful completion of the internship, the student is awarded the degree of MBBS. At this stage, the student can opt for further studies and appear for the NEET PG exam. Many times students do not want to pursue further studies; they can directly opt for private practice or take up a job. Let us get a preview of the jobs offered to MBBS graduates. These graduates are welcomed in both the private sectors as well as government jobs. An MBBS graduate takes a job in hospitals with trauma centres, emergency rooms, healthcare facilities, or laboratories.
The MBBS graduate can work as a medical officer supervising and providing medical assistance to patients. A medical officer participates in the treatment of the patient. Another role that is lucrative is that of a general physician. A GP, is known popularly, is the first point of contact and thus their diagnosis helps in the subsequent treatment and recovery of the patient. The role of a dietician, too, can be taken up. With lifestyle diseases springing up time and again, these doctors guide patients to eat nutritional and healthy food.
In the private sector, an MBBS graduate can opt for private-sector jobs in Pharma companies like Abbott, Sun Pharmaceuticals, Merck, etc, to name a few. They can opt to work in companies like Apollo Munich or ICICI Prudential, to name a few. Another interesting career option could also be joining the armed forces. The Indian defence ministry recruits medical graduates for its various hospitals, infantry units, and for its emergency services. However, the candidate will have to go through army training for it.
Career options after doing MBBS and subsequent post- graduation
The mysteries of medicine have marvelled many, so how can a doctor remain unfazed by it. Normally, after completing the MBBS program, many students plan to pursue further studies. Students can either pursue a MD or a MS degree or even a diploma in medicine in the field of their choice. The PG specialisations offered traditionally are in the departments of Medicine, Clinical Pathology, Ophthalmology, General medicine, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, ENT, Dermatology, General surgery etc. since the advancement in medical science many new streams too have come up.
They are namely Image Analysis, Regenerative Medicine, Recombinant DNA therapy, and many more. These specialties combine medicine with the marvels of medicine and help in better disease management and recovery. Many students may also opt for pursuing medicine overseas, like in Australia or the United Kingdom, or the USA. These students have to take different entrance tests pertaining to the country like giving the USMLE exam to study further in the USA
Other popular courses after MBBS
While MBBS is the most sought-after course, there are other fields that offer a doctor’s degree too. They are as follows:
- BDS – Bachelor of Dental Surgery: A stream of medicine that deals with Oral health and hygiene combined with cosmetology
- BAMS – Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery : This stream of medicine uses ancient ayurveda combined with traditional ayurvedic techniques to bring about healing. It is now a very popular option for chronic illness
- BHMS – Bachelor of Homoeopathic Medicine and Surgery : using homoeopathic techniques and treatments brings about good health. Like BAMS this option is popular with patients who are looking for solutions to chronic illnesses.
- BVsc – Bachelor of Veterinary Science – This branch of medicine deals with animals and their well being
- BPT – Bachelor of Physiotherapy – This branch of medicine uses physical therapy to heal illness unlike surgery. This branch is gaining momentum due to excessive use of joints and is popular for recovery after major surgery or replacements.
- BUMS – Bachelor of Unani Medicine and Surgery – Relatively newer stream and not so popular.
As a doctor, your remuneration depends on your expertise, which is directly proportional to the amount of experience you have in the field. A fresher can fairly earn around 3 to 4 lacs per annum. Once the experience is around 6- 12 years, the remuneration can be between 8-12 lacs depending on the city you live or work. A senior doctor with around more than 15 to 20 years of experience earns around 15- 18 lacs per annum
NEET score is mandatory for admission in a medical college. Cracking NEET requires dedication, determination, and discipline. One can join coaching classes as early as 9th std to coach for NEET. There are various institutes that offer exclusive coaching for the same
A doctor can practice medicine by either treating patients or by doing research in the field of medicine to bring about newer molecules and drugs that help in improving the life of patients. The career option as a clinical researcher is very lucrative as you can earn around 75 thousand to 1 lakh per month. If you have a research trait it you, then this is an ideal career choice
Both MD as well as MS are 3 year courses. One studies specialised subjects as opposed to MBBS where the syllabus is a gist of all the branches of medicine.
A NEET score of 350 plus is mandatory for securing admissions in BAMS or BHMS streams.