NEET-PG to be postponed by 6-8 weeks, declares Centre


The Union Health Ministry on Friday said it was delaying by six to eight weeks the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET-PG) for post-graduate medical courses — scheduled for March 12 — on appeals made by MBBS students to do so.

The postponement of the test will allow MBBC students to complete their one year-mandatory internship in time for post-exam counselling; there were delays in the final exams for MBBS due to the pandemic and consequently students’ internship across states.

The move will likely also help candidates — who did not get a post-graduate seat in counselling for the 2021 batch — to appear again for the test.

“…a lot of representations were being received from medical doctors regarding the request to delay NEET PG-2022 examination date … since it is clashing with the NEET-PG 2021 counselling. Also, many of the interns would not be able to participate in the PG counselling 2022 by the month of May/ June 2022… Keeping the above facts in view, the Hon’ble HFM has taken the decision to postpone NEET PG 2022 by 6-8 weeks or suitably,” read a letter by Dr B Srinivas, assistant director general (medical education) at the Directorate General of Health Services, to the National Board of Examinations, which conducts the test.

The ministry’s decision was made at a time the Supreme Court is hearing a petition by six students who contended that many MBBS graduates will not be able to appear for NEET-PG due to non-completion of the mandatory internship period.

The NEET-PG examinations are normally held in January every year. However, last year’s test were held in September on account of the pandemic. NEET counselling for the 2021 batch was then delayed again although the results were announced because of pending pleas in the Supreme Court over reservation of economically weaker section. Counselling began only in January this year, and it is likely to extend to March-April.

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