Paramedical courses in India: Course, scope, eligibility

Not being able to afford a medical seat doesn’t mean your ambition to become a health professional is over. If the dream still stays strong inside you, I can show you a few doors to knock. The industry is not only about doctors but also other professionals who assist or help them. This includes paramedical forces who form a large part of the industry in terms of numbers. 

Paramedical forces, also known as allied medical science professionals, are trained health professionals who take care of individuals in need of medical assistance. This includes professions such as nurses, pharmaceutical professionals, technicians, etc. They work alongside doctors in providing the best health care service available to patients. In this article, I’m going to talk about a few popular paramedical courses available in India.

Nursing

Do angels wear white? I’m not sure about that. But if you ask me who the angels on earth are, the answer will obviously be ‘nurses’. It is one of the noblest professions on this planet. In between all the chaos that surrounds this world, they are the people who took up the mission to serve the ill and the old. 

In India, the most popular courses for those who wish to take up nursing as a career are BSc nursing, general nursing and midwifery (GNM) and auxiliary nursing and midwifery (ANM). BSc Nursing is a 4-year undergraduate course in nursing. The minimum eligibility for admissions to BSc nursing courses is to have done HSE in the science stream with physics, chemistry, and maths as compulsory subjects. One can either start their career as a nurse or enroll for the MSc nursing program after BSc nursing.

General nursing is a 3-year course while Auxilary nursing is a 2-year course. It is not mandatory to take up the science stream for your HSE to secure admissions for these two courses. But you can’t enroll for MSc programs directly after these courses. You’ve to go for the lateral entry routes to BSc nursing, complete the course and then go for MSc nursing. 

Nursing is a very common academic stream in India today. Few of the best institutions that offer nursing programs in the country are All India Institute of medical sciences, Delhi (AIMS), Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education & Research (JIPMER), Puducherry, Regional Institute Of Medical Sciences, Imphal, Father Muller College Allied Health Sciences, Mangalore, etc.

B pharm

What about becoming one of those individuals who can actually read a doctor’s prescription? Yes, I’m talking about pharmacists. Pharmacists are healthcare professionals who practice pharmacy. They prepare, pack and sell medicines according to a doctor’s prescription. They advise the patient on dosages and time intervals to maximize the desired outcomes and reduce the unfavorable effects of the drugs. It is one of the most in-demand paramedical career fields today and the course you’ve to take up to become a pharmacist is BPharm.

BPharm is a 4 year professional paramedical undergraduate course that can be taken up by students who had physics, chemistry, and biology as compulsory subjects during their HSE. Those who did the Dpharm course can also get into the Bpharm program through lateral entry options. One can work as a clinical pharmacist, community pharmacist, medical research scientist, etc after the course. A few of the best institutions in the country for Bpharm are Raghavendra Institute Of Pharmaceutical Education & Research, Vivekanand Education Society`S College Of Pharmacy, Bombay College Of Pharmacy, Mumbai, etc.

BPT (Bachelor of Physiotherapy)

Physiotherapy is the study of techniques and practices to restore, retain, maintain and maximize physical strength and movements. Physiotherapists use such techniques to treat people suffering from injury, pain, movement-related issues, etc. 

One can become a physiotherapist in India by taking up BPT (Bachelor of physiotherapy) course. This 4.5-year (including 6 months internship) undergraduate course covers subjects such as physiology, psychology, exercise therapy, therapeutic exercises, and application of electro-physical modalities, etc. 

One needs to complete a 6-month internship after BPT course to practice as a physiotherapist. Students who had physics, chemistry, and biology as compulsory subjects during their HSE can take up this program. Those who did DPT (Diploma in physiotherapy) course can also get into the BPT program through lateral entry options. Swami Vivekanand University, Sagar, Pacific Medical University, Udaipur, Rajasthan University Of Health Sciences, Jaipur are few Indian institutions that offer physiotherapy courses. 

BSc Operation Theatre technology

Who else other than doctors and nurses gets to be inside an operation theatre? Operation theatre technologists. They are the professionals who prepare and maintain an operation theatre for surgery. They assist doctors during surgery by setting up the OT and instrument trolleys for specific surgeries, positioning the operation table and patient, etc. Their work also includes keeping the equipment in check, autoclaving and preparation of sterile supplies required for use in the operation theatre, etc. 

The course you should take up is BSc operation theatre technology (BSc OTT). It is a 3 and a half year undergraduate course that prepares you for the role. Those who did the Diploma in operation theatre technology can also get into the BSc OTT program through lateral entry options. A few of the best institutions that offer operation theatre technology are All India Institute Of Medical Sciences, NIMS School Of Paramedical Sciences And Technology-Raichur, Christian Medical College, Vellore, etc. 

BSc radiological technology/ BSc radiography

This is about operating hospital machinery like X-rays and MRIs. Radiology technologists utilize various imaging technologies to generate medical images that a physician can use to diagnose diseases or injuries. They also assist oncologists in monitoring radiation therapies. A Radiology technologist can specialize in various machinery and procedures such as X-ray technology, CT technology, Mammography technology, MRI technology, nuclear medicine technology, etc.

Now, let’s get to the courses. Like most other fields I mentioned earlier, both BSc and diploma programs are available. The BSc courses available in India are BSc radiological technology and BSc radiography. Students who have completed HSE with physics chemistry and biology as compulsory subjects are eligible to apply for these programs. The duration of BSc programs is 3 years and it’s 2 years for diploma programs. ALL India Institute Of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Government Medical College, Amritsar, University College Of Medical Sciences, New Delhi offer radiography programs. 

Perfusion technology

During cardiac surgery, it is important to keep the respiratory and circulatory functions of a patient in check. The professionals who help cardiac surgeons with this are called perfusion technologists. He or she uses the cardiopulmonary bypass machine during surgeries to artificially support and temporarily replace a patient’s respiratory and circulatory systems. Other than this, they should also prepare patients for surgery using cardiovascular monitoring techniques, assemble parts of the heart-lung machine and make sure it works properly. 

If you are up for it, many reputed institutions in the country offer BSc perfusion technology. This is a three-year course and is followed by 6 months internship.  Students who have completed HSE with physics chemistry and biology as compulsory subjects are eligible to apply for BSc Perfusion technology. AIIMS, Delhi, Yenapoya University, Karnataka, Manipal University, Karnataka, SRM University, Chennai, etc offer these courses. 

Renal Dialysis technology

This is about administering the dialysis procedure for patients with renal failure. Dialysis technologists conduct the procedure under the supervision of a qualified nurse or physician. Many reputed institutions in the country offer BSc Renal Dialysis technology programs. Institutions such as Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, Bangalore and SRM institute of science and technology offer this 3-year course. 

BSc in Anesthesia technology

I believe everyone knows what Anesthesia is. So, this is about administering and monitoring anesthesia procedures. They have extensive knowledge of anesthesia techniques, instruments, supplies, and technology. Those who are planning to take up this paramedical profession should go for B Sc in Anesthesia technology. Amritha University, Manipal University, Sri Sathya Sai Institute of medical science, etc offer BSc Anesthesia technology. 

Conclusion

Paramedical forces are an important part of the health industry. They assist medical professionals. There are a number of paramedical courses available in India. The choice should depend on an individual’s aptitude, interest, and aspirations. We hope the illustrated analysis has powered up your insights and widened your perspectives about paramedical courses available in India. Always remember that you make your own destiny. Make sure that you invest time and thought before making your life-changing decisions.

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