LAHORE: Around 65,155 candidates appeared in Medical and Dental Colleges’ Admission Test (MDCAT) for admission against 5,995 MBBS and 771 BDS seats in public and private colleges of Punjab.
The test was conducted by University of Health Sciences (UHS), Lahore, simultaneously in 13 cities of the province, amid tight security, on Sunday. Last year, 56,272 candidates appeared in the test.
Later in the afternoon, UHS uploaded the answer keys to the question papers of different colour codes on its website www.uhs.edu.pk. With the help of these keys, candidates can calculate their scores themselves. The official result will be announced within a week.
In the next stage, those candidates who will score 84 percent or above aggregate marks in accordance with the formula of Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC) will be eligible to apply on open merit basis and will opt for the colleges of their choice by submitting admission forms from October 04 to October 14. These forms, along with the prospectus, will be available free-of-cost from UHS, Lahore, Nishter Medical University, Multan, and Rawalpindi Medical University, Rawalpindi, during these dates. The first selection list for medical/dental colleges will be displayed on October 30, whereas classes in medical colleges will commence on November 13.
There are 3,405 MBBS seats in 17 public sector medical colleges and 216 BDS seats in three public dental colleges of the Punjab. Besides, there are 2,590 MBBS and 555 BDS seats in 21 private sector medical colleges and nine dental colleges affiliated with UHS.
On Sunday, the test started at 0900 hrs, went of peacefully at 28 centres set up in Lahore, Sargodha, Sahiwal, Gujrat, Gujranwala Faisalabad, Bahawalpur, Multan, Dera Ghazi Khan, Rahimyar Khan, Rawalpindi, Sialkot and Hassan Abdal.
A large number of police personnel were deployed at the centres to prevent any disruption of the examination. Ambulances and fire brigades were also made available at the centres to counter any untoward incident. Besides, Close Circuit TV (CCTV) cameras, mobile phone jammers and walk-through gates were installed at major centres. There were proper arrangements for the disabled students, parking and waiting area facilities for the parents of the candidates. Back-up power generators were also provided at some of the centres.
The candidates and parents expressed their satisfaction on the arrangement made by UHS and the provincial government. Parents were seen reciting Holy Quran for the success of their children. No untoward incident was reported during the course of the test.
On the direction of the chief minister, senior bureaucrats and government officers monitored the test. UHS Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Junaid Sarfraz Khan visited various centres and monitored the arrangements in Lahore.
Talking to newsmen on this occasion, UHS VC said that medical and dental colleges had always challenged the brightest and best-prepared minds. He added that admissions were consistently becoming more competitive.
“MDCAT results are extremely important. They carry 50 percent weightage in merit as per the formula of PMDC. They are proof that the candidate can handle the academic rigour of medical or dental college”, the VC opined.Prof Junaid said that admission to private sector medical and dental colleges would also be regulated to ensure merit.