Dr Anan Shetty, professor of a UKbased university, talks about one-year courses for Indian surgeons in the UK
New Delhi March 9 The world of medicine is undergoing changes, and the focus has been shifting to regenerative medicine. Through this, the body is made to heal on its own through stem cells, bio-engineering, 3D printing, computing and robotics, says Dr.Anan Shetty, professor, Canterbury Christ Church University (CCCU), UK. “In the past, a patient suffering from arthritis would opt for hip and knee replacement. But these days we are teaching the surgeons to use cell technology without resorting to the use of metal and plastic. Similarly, in corneal injuries, the earlier practice involved corneal transplants from cadavers, but in today’s world, surgeons are being trained to grow the cornea through technological means using robotics and computing,” says Dr Shetty.
In the UK, doctors take six years to specialise in areas such as orthopaedics, ophthalmology, obstetrics, gynaecology and urology. However, through a Master’s programme in Surgery (MCh), which is presently being offered at his university in the fields of otorhinolaryngology, orthopaedics and regenerative medicine, urology and ophthalmology, Indian doctors can pursue a oneyear’s surgical degree in the UK, while doing their surgical training.
Indian doctors seeking admission in this course, should be registered medical practitioners with a minimum of three years’ work experience as a practicing clinician and IELTS score of 7.5 to secure GMC (General Medical Council) registration (which allows international medical graduates to practice in the UK).
“The MCh degree is also available through the observation route without GMC-where the practitioner would be allowed to gain admission at the university and enrol as an observer without being allowed to do any surgery- and in that the clinician should have an IELTS score of 6.5. The MCh in surgery with its four specialist surgical pathways is aimed at doctors who are at ST 1 level (basic Specialty Training level) and above and provides an added educational component for them while they are progressing in their surgical training,” adds Dr Shetty.
While Indian clinicians aspiring to undertake postgraduate study in medicine are required to appear for PLAB 1 and 2 (Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board exams designed to prove if the doctor has the necessary skills and knowledge to practice medicine in the UK) examinations conducted by GMC, this course offers direct admission to students without PLAB tests. Under the International Sponsorship Scheme for international medical graduates (IMGs) which the university runs along with six other UK universities, IMGs who meet the GMC criteria will be permitted to gain GMC registration while studying at the university along with support from professors at the university.