Scope of PG Courses after MBBS in India

The scope of PG courses after MBBS in India is huge and there are many reasons to it which is explained in this article. Indian healthcare system is facing a number of challenges, the largest being the lack of specialists mainly in rural areas. India is ranked at 154th on the Healthcare Access and Quality Index among other nations making it one of the biggest under-achievers in Asia. Being the country of villages, India needs extensive access to health care services in rural areas.

Indian health care system requires highly skilled human resources from specialized doctors to other medical support

staff like lab technicians, nurses, pharmacists, etc. The ratio of Physicians in India is at 0.7 per 1000 population, which is very low as given by the World Health Organization (WHO). Furthermore, majority of the medical professionals serve in urban areas where patients have higher paying capability leaving the rural areas under-served. It is observed that 74% of the Physicians cater to around 442 million urban population, resulting in the shortage of specialists in rural areas. The Primary Health Centres (PHCs) in India’s rural areas are facing huge problems due to dearth of health care professionals.

The recent study shows that the number of aspirants seeking PG Courses after MBBS in India has been increasing rapidly in the past few years due to the demand for specialists and huge scope. Let us understand the importance of postgraduate medical education in India.

PG Courses after mbbs

Postgraduate Medical Education in India

Indian medical education system is one of the largest in the world. Medical Colleges in India have rapidly proliferated in the past 25 years offering degrees at Undergraduate and Postgraduate level.

The postgraduate medical education in India is available for graduate doctors through 21423 seats in Doctor of Medicine (MD) program with 34 Specialties, 11678 seats in Master of Surgery (MS) program with 5 Specialties and 4177 seats in Postgraduate Diploma with 29 Specialties. The postgraduate medical education in broad specialities (Clinical & Non-Clinical subjects) shall be of three years duration in the case of MD course & MS course, and two years duration in the case of PG Diploma courses after MBBS.

The training of students admitted to PG Courses after MBBS shall involve learning experience targeted to the needs of the community. The goal of PG medical education is to produce competent specialists.

Qualifying Criteria to study PG Medicine in India

Securing PG medical admission in medical colleges in India is a competitive process and takes a focused effort. Here is all you need to know about the qualifying criteria to pursue PG courses after MBBS in India.

The minimum criterion of eligibility for PG medical admission in India is to have a recognized MBBS degree with minimum aggregate marks of 50% along with one year internship.

There shall be uniform PG medical entrance exam viz. National Eligibility cum Entrance Test PG (NEET PG) to all medical colleges in India, except for AIIMS, JIPMER, PGIMER and NIMHANS, for admission to PG medical courses in each academic year. AIIMS, JIPMER, PGIMER and NIMHANS have their own PG medical entrance exam for admission to their PG courses after MBBS.

PG Medical Entrance Exam Cut-off Details

The minimum qualifying percentile in NEET PG is 50th percentile. As per the academic year 2018-19, 321 score in NEET PG was considered to be the safe score for obtaining a PG medical seat. However, the cut-off score for the next academic year may vary based on the number of applicants appeared for the NEET PG exam and qualified. For the academic year 2018-19, the NEET PG percentile was reduced by 15 percentile due to insufficient number of students securing the minimum marks for PG medical admission. This is not the first time that NEET PG qualifying percentile was lowered. The cut-off percentile was reduced by 7.5 percentile in 2017.

As per the academic year 2018-19, the cut-off rank for AIIMS PG was 1623 and the cut-off score for JIPMER PG was 166. The figures for the next academic year may vary based on the number of qualifiers in these PG medical entrance exams.

PG Courses after MBBS

Most Sought-after PG Medical Specialities

The NEET PG merit cutoffs determine the demand for the specialization. Higher the Cutoff, the demand is high. While every speciality has its own importance, here is the list of top 10 PG medical specialties in demand based on merit cutoffs.

1. Radio-Diagnosis:

With the advent of technology, the use of Imaging Technology to diagnose a variety of internal injuries or conditions has rapidly increased resulting in the demand for Radiologists. To secure a merit seat in Radio-Diagnosis, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 1500.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 1583

2. Dermatology, Venereology & Leprosy:

As the prevalence of skin disorders and cosmetic issues is high due to increasing pollution and changing lifestyle particularly in urban areas, the demand for Dermatologists is growing rapidly. To secure a merit seat in Dermatology, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 2500.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 2555

3. General Medicine:

General Medicine Physicians are in high demand because they are one stop health consultants who evaluates the patients’ health issues, diagnose the disease and directs them to the appropriate specialist. To secure a merit seat in General Medicine, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 3800.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 3824

4. Paediatrics:

In India, over 69,000 babies are born every day. With this, the need for Paediatricians is increasing rapidly as Paediatricians are specialized in diagnosing and treating illness in infants and children from minor health issues to serious diseases. To secure a merit seat in Paediatrics, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 4000.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 4107

5. Orthopaedics:

The ailments related to musculoskeletal system are quite prevalent particularly in elderly people due to various factors resulting in the increased demand for Orthopaedicians. To secure a merit seat in Orthopaedics, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 4400.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 4439

PG Courses After MBBS

6. Obstetrics and Gynaecology (OBG):

Earlier women preferred giving birth to a child at home. However the mindset of women is changing dramatically as more women are seeking gynaecology consultation to understand their reproductive health. Also the women seeking birth surgeries are increasing rapidly resulting in the increasing demand for Gynaecologists. To secure a merit seat in OBG, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 6200.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 6234

7. General Surgery:

With growing surgical interventions where medicines cannot work and the progress in surgical procedures, the need for surgeons is increasing at a fast pace resulting in the increasing demand for specialized surgeons. To secure a merit seat in General Surgery, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 7300.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 7385

8. Ophthalmology:

Not just in elderly people, but the prevalence of vision problems is increasing rapidly in youngsters due to prolonged exposure to digital screens and other factors resulting in the increased demand for Ophthalmologists. To secure a merit seat in Ophthalmology, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 8400.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 8453

9. Psychiatry:

The growing expectations in personal and professional lives have resulted in increased levels of stress giving rise to mental health problems. More and more people are looking for Psychiatrists who could help them in dealing with their mental health issues. As a result, there is an increased demand for Psychiatrists. To secure a merit seat in Psychiatry, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 9200.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 9249

10. ENT:

The demand for ENT specialists is drastically increasing because of rising health problems among people related to Ear, Nose and Throat due to factors like repeated exposure to loud sound, increased air pollution and use of junk food. To secure a merit seat in ENT, aspirants must obtain a rank of around 10500.

Quota First Round Cutoff Rank (2018-19)
AIQ – Government Medical Colleges 10578

Demand for Clinical Subjects over Non-Clinical Subjects

The demand for clinical subjects is always high in comparison with non-clinical subjects due to various reasons that are discussed here under:

Recognition: In this competitive world, being recognized in the society is very important to be successful and a clinical subject will give you that kind of recognition and status in the society whereas non-clinical subjects are not highly recognized in the society due to lack of direct patient interaction.

Stability: A clinical subject offers stable and secure employment to those who want to enter a specialized profession and seeking to propel their careers whereas non-clinical subjects do not offer consistent job stability.

Flexibility: A clinical subject offers the flexibility to work as a specialist for different health care centres at different time slots whereas a non-clinical subject does not give you such work flexibility and restricts your work for mostly a particular centre.

Scope: The career prospects offered by clinical subjects are huge in terms of employment opportunities as well as further studies whereas non-clinical subjects do not offer enough job opportunities and there is less or no scope in terms of further studies.

Growth: Clinical subjects offer higher pay scales and the professional growth is excellent and rewarding whereas non-clinical subjects offer comparatively lower pay scales and the professional growth is limited.

PG Courses after MBBS

Why PG Degree Courses are preferred over PG Diploma Courses

At academic level, a PG degree course (MD/MS) is a 3-year course with the last year focused on research, whereas a PG diploma course is only a 2-year course. Both the courses are offered in various clinical and non-clinical subjects, however a PG diploma course is not offered in some of the specialties. For instance, General Medicine and General Surgery are not offered as PG diploma courses.

Although getting a PG diploma seat is less competitive than getting a MD/MS seat for the reason that the cut-off score for PG diploma course is comparatively lower than PG degree course as the demand for PG degree course is always high. This is mainly because of the fact a MD/MS degree is required to qualify for academic posts like Assistant Professor Post and onwards in medical colleges or to become a senior resident, whereas PG diploma holders cannot. Another reason for the demand going up for MD/MS course is that the MD/MS degree holders can pursue super-specialty course which is not in the case of PG diploma course.

Career Prospects for PG degree are far more prominent and fast-paced due to the recognition of the course by the authorized bodies. Hence availing of graded posts as per the UGC standards becomes easy and professional growth is hassle-free. In the case of PG diploma, it is mandatory for a PG diploma holder to study MD/MS course for graded posts which demands prolonged study of another 3 years. Therefore, a PG degree course is always high in demand and preferred over a PG diploma course for a bright, successful and rewarding career.

Making a Significant Career Decision

After a hard work of clearing entrance exam, students face another dilemma of choosing the right specialization from so many specializations and the right college from hundreds of medical colleges in India. It is always important to make the right choice at the right time.

The choice of Specialization and College mainly depends on the rank obtained in PG medical entrance exam, and the selection process to PG Courses after MBBS is through counselling conducted by the authorized bodies. Here we are discussing some of the challenges often faced by the PG aspirants at the time of counselling.

Scenario 1: High Score, but unable to decide on the specialization and college

The possibility of getting a preferred specialization in a good Medical college mainly depends on your rank. In case you have secured a high rank, it makes you eligible to choose between any of higher specializations in that category. Students are mostly confused between the choice of a better specialization or the college. We suggest opting for a Best College even if one need to compromise on the choice of the specialization opted or else go for your preferred specialization in the Better College as per your rank.

Scenario 2: Low Score but want to pursue a clinical specialization

Low score reduces the possibilities of securing a merit seat in clinical specialization in 3-year MD or MS course. On the other hand, you may have the option to choose the course by paying high fees. However, if money is the constraint then choosing a PG diploma course in a clinical subject from the best available medical colleges is the better solution, provided you do not want to drop a year.

Scenario 3: Very Low Score. What could be the best option?

Generally the seats in clinical courses fill up quickly as the demand for the same is very high. Since you have a very low score, aiming for a clinical course is pointless. The best option in this case is to seek a different subject or drop a year. Dropping a year is good only if you are aiming for a particular subject. Otherwise, if you have options to choose from non-clinical subjects like Pathology, Forensic Medicine, Microbiology and Pharmacology in a reputed medical college then go ahead. With the field of health care becoming more complex than ever before, requiring specialists in areas outside of patient care, the demand for non-clinical specialists is gradually increasing.

PG Courses After MBBS


Pursuing a PG course, be it MD or MS or Diploma, has become a mandatory requirement after MBBS as people look out for specialists rather than general physicians. Consequently, the demand for PG courses after MBBS is growing by the day even after more PG medical seats are being added up in order to keep up with this demand and to cater to the growing health care needs of the society. However with changing rules and regulations, the process of selection to PG courses after MBBS through counselling is constantly changing leaving the students confused and worried even after securing good ranks. Students often make mistakes during merit counselling process and tend to lose a good opportunity. In such cases, it is always better to seek Expert Guidance.

Getting proper guidance from experts who have complete understanding and knowledge of PG medical education in India is helpful while making a major career decision. Pentagon Education Services is one of a kind education consultancy which offers Expert Counselling to the students who lack knowledge about the selection process to PG courses after MBBS in India. Our expert counselling aims at providing complete guidance and support to the meritorious students in choosing the right specialization and college at their rank. Our strong expertise in the field of PG medical admissions in India is sure to help prospective students in securing a merit seat.

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