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Med Educ Online. 2013 May 6;18:1-4. doi: 10.3402/meo.v18i0.20961.

Emerging alternative model for cardiothoracic surgery training in India.

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  • 1Mahatma Gandhi Medical College and Research Institute, Pondicherry, India.



In India, cardiothoracic (CT) surgery training follows a 3+3-year model, where 3 years of general surgery residency with certification (MS/DNB) is required for entering 3 years of thoracic surgery residency (MCh/DNB). There are two certifying boards at the national level. One being the Medical Council of India (MCI), which oversees the major accreditation process involving the undergraduate and postgraduate medical education in India, and the other being the National Board of Examinations (NBE), which was formed for the purpose of establishing a uniform standard of postgraduate medical education. Recently, the latter body has come up with an alternative model for thoracic surgery residency in India. This model includes an integrated 6-year residency, with lesser emphasis on general surgical skills and greater exposure to CT surgery.


Changes to the current model of training for CT surgery is the need of the hour and should be initiated very soon by the MCI to meet the future demand for CT surgeons in India. An integrated training program is essential to create a new generation of cardiovascular specialists. Future directions to achieve this goal must include modifications to the undergraduate programs so as to infuse interest for CT surgery in the young minds of medical students.


India; thoracic surgery; training

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