There are always lots of queries regarding the DNB CET counselling in form of e-mails, messenger and sometimes even calls before the counselling. Its impossible to reply all of them but most importantly my knowledge regarding counselling is not fresh, besides the dynamics changes every now and then, the training institution change from bad to good and vice versa.

Helping choose the training centers at particular rank and labeling institution good or bad is not only impossible but also unfair. It may misguide you. The reason is choices can not always be academic centric but may have many personal angles like family, economy, location etc.
However putting up the criteria on how to choose is definitely possible. 
This post is a small session I have done with Arun, who definitely has better insights on this topic than me and includes most of the queries as I remember, asked by you guys

There are only 2 types of candidates who never have any tension during counselling, The first 10 ranks and those whose rank is in that range where you are sure that you won’t get anything. Rest everyone get tensed or confused, whether they will get the subject and/or hospital of their choice and a lot of questions in the mind, one of the most prominent is

Should I choose DCH over DNB in Pediatrics, as former is difficult to pass?

Well, our take on this is DNB, for a very obvious reason, a diploma vs degree, cant be compared. Detailed discussion on this will deviate from the purpose of this post, you can go through Aruns another post on this topic here and my post here on the same.
Over to Arun for Tips on counselling for DNB CET
I like pediatrics and getting DNB, however, MD/MS only in subjects other than pediatrics, What choice should I make? This is a very common question. What is your take on this ?

Making a choice between MD/MS vs DNB in same subject is not difficult, lets accept the fact that DNB has hardship, but just remember that if you get a very good DNB institute say for example Gangaram or KKCTH, you actually may become a better clinician.

I don’t want to comment on the quality of education in MD vs DNB as it will be distraction from topic, however MD can be worse and completely uneducative and so is DNB, meaning thereby, it all depends on the environment. By no means MD gives you a guarantee to teach correct/ updated clinical science.

My take: If you have a very good rank and getting DNB in a good institution, dont hesitate rather than working in bad place for MD

I dont know which subject to choose for DNB? what are your suggestions.

See, by the time results are out most of us are able to decide their future branch. But for some confused souls, let your interests during internship/ house surgeoncies guide you.
Decide whether you want medical, surgical or non clinical branches as the first step. Let your personality, capacity for working hours, help you decide for hard working branches vs cool branches, remember there is long way after postgraduation, any cool branch may demand further education too in future.  On that note most of the branches now require further subspecialty training.

If you have hardcore interest for a subject, let not the things like economy and working hours misguide you, you stand a good chance of becoming famous pediatrician than a bad radiologist.
Surgical branches have good money but establishing yourself is not a easy task post PG. They are more risky in terms of medicolegeal aspects also.

There is a  blanket notion that all surgical specialties in DNB are bad and are a definitely “not to be taken”

However, My experience on this is different: Following the same dictum, I helped chose DOMS for my wife in place of DNB at center like Shankara Netralaya. Studied in one of the so called best ophthalmology government hospital and presently studying in a very good DNB institute for secondary DNB now, she clearly understood that DOMS was mere waste of time (2 additional years) without much of clinical  advantage. She could have got an even better DNB institute during her primary counselling than the present which was botched because of mere following the dictum. Thats is why its important to do your homework well before counselling not only for the DNB centers but also for MD and Diploma centers if you are thinking of them over DNB.

Medicine and Pediatrics require a lot of patience, but there is always a place for you, there are wide range of sub-specialties attached to keep you progressive. Academic always runs in blood, you can teach, practice, and learn forever. Money depends on location, your ability to specialize further and many other factors. Stress is inevitable, legal issues are there but manageable! besides what is not risky

Non clinical branches are good, pure academics, so can satisfy your teaching instincts, no legal risk, cool life but money mark is limited and there is retirement. If you have not inclined to money making, love cool life, off you go!

I have decided my specialty, what order of preference should I set ?

Before i start, always Keep option of another specility ready in case you don’t get the speciality of our choice, you should have your second list ready. Then comes the point of maximum confusion as to which hospital to take.

The following are the characteristics of a good college/hospital

  1. Has been running a successful DNB program for some years. Successful means not just having a good pass percentage, but low dropouts. Always enquire about the 3 year pass percentage.
  2. Whether the hospital has a good academic program and whether they promote academics or are they just looking for low pay workers
  3. Whether they have a DNB examiner and if they have, then definitely it’s a good institute. If they have a bonafide DNB teacher who has good teaching experience, that is also a plus point.

Always enquire about the hospital before taking it. Even if it’s a hospital of good repute to the public, it may be a bad DNB institute. Never pre-judge an institute before actually enquiring.

Actual Enquiry means, go physically and enquire, if not, then talk to the post graduates there. Its always preferable to talk to at least 2 people since each person will have their unique view about the institute based on their experiences.

An example I cite often is myself and my batchmate. When we were in our first year, both of us advised others against taking our institute, by second I would advice to take and he to not opt for; by third year he had also sort of mellowed down after seeing other institutes and now both of us recommend the institute strongly to others.

Location: It all depends on what you need and how you will cope. Easy if your sole aim is academics but some people are extremely home sick and opt for places near their home.

Patient load: Don’t presume that the more the patient load, better the hospital or the vice versa. An institute can have good patient load, but may be an average DNB institute, while a not so busy place can be a good place to learn, albeit have to practice in a more busy place later on.

Academics: I am comparing 2 hospitals for this, Pediatrics at Manipal Hospital Bangalore and Baptist Hospital Bangalore.

Manipal has excellent academics with state of the art PICU and NICU, has a good passing percentage and has ample free time and provision for good study leave. But, being a pure corporate hospital, patients are more demanding and work might be stressful and you will get less of hands on exposure even in the ICU and no independent duties in the ICU at all.

On the other hand, Baptist is more like government with lots of patients, individual duties, good exposure and hands on experience. But the working hours are hectic and there is no provision for a study leave and secondary's especially find this a bit tiresome after their DCH days. Both are excellent institutes for pediatrics and the best in Karnataka. Which one would you choose would depend upon purely upon you!

Suggest on how to be prepared before counselling

Always have a list of speciality and the institutes in order when going for the counselling. Don’t get fooled by what others say at the venue. The best way to get a good seat ( other than writing the exam well and getting a good rank) is to do good research and be prepared for the best and worst scenarios.

Second round of counselling is a gamble. Most of the times, good seats come in the second round, but if you are getting a seat from your list in the first round, go for it. This time, with DNB happening after all india and state counselling, the chances of seat blocking and wasted seats seems to be less but the actual counselling may open up surprises.

What are some general tips you will suggest ?
  1. Be there on time.
  2. Triple check whether all documents are there along with 2 extra copies. I know that only 1 is required, but do have 2 spare copies each.
  3. Make sure that you have the draft ready or your card with you.
  4. Never forget to take photo identity proof along with you.
To conclude, be prepared, do ample research and hope for the best. All the best!!! If you have queries ask below in comment box

Disclaimer:  The above views are personal and as such, there is plenty of scope for disagreement and is by no means a gold standard document. All of this may not be practical for a lot of people, but this is the best possible way to decide.

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