It will be conducted in the 40 NBE-accredited hospitals in the country

The National Board of Examination (NBE) has re-introduced the direct six-year, post-MBBS super speciality programme. The courses will be conducted in neuro surgery, plastic surgery, cardio-thoracic surgery and paediatric surgery. A Speciality Advisory Board in the respective specialities is looking into the existing curriculum and assessment scheme for the direct course.

Introduced on the recommendations of the M.K. Bhan Committee, the students will have to qualify the Central Entrance Test (CET) conducted by the NBE to enter the programme. The results of this academic year's CET were declared a few days ago and the admission process is under way.

The courses will begin in March. The super speciality courses will be conducted in 40 NBE-accredited hospitals across the country, including the Lok Nayak Jaya Prakash government Hospital in New Delhi and the Narayana Hrudayalaya hospital in Bangalore. A fresh set of admission guidelines have been finalised. The hospitals that will be given the option of holding either a post Diplomate of National Board (DNB degree granted by the NBE)/MS three-year course or post-MBBS six year course.

The NBE was established in 1975 with the prime objective of improving the quality of medical education by establishing high and uniform standards of postgraduate examinations in modern medicine. The Board at present conducts post graduate and post doctoral examinations in approved specialities leading to awarding of DNB degree. The Diplomate qualifications awarded by the NBE have been given equivalence with the post graduate and post doctorate degrees awarded by other Indian universities for all purposes including appointment of teaching posts.

“We had discontinued the direct six years post-MBBS course in 2006 as it did not take up as expected as the students wanted to opt for more lucrative areas but have re-introduced it and the response has been very encouraging. The course has been re-structured and a fresh curriculum has been prepared,” Dr. Bipin Batra, NBE Executive Director told The Hindu.

We have about 80-100 super speciality seats in the 40 NBE-accredited hospitals across the country where surgical training will be imparted, and the number of aspirants was four to six times the number of seats, he said.

``While the super speciality courses will focus on respective areas, the specialists will also be imparted extensive training on clinical and procedural skills, communication skills, and ethical and legal issues also.''