France's medical education system to change
Siân Knight, Student BMJ
The French prime minister, Lionel Jospin, has officially announced drastic changes to the country's system of medical education. Currently, nine out of 10 French medical students are rejected after their first year of medical training, and plans are now being introduced to broaden the intake of medical applicants and make it easier for students to change courses should they wish to do so. The reforms have come about after two years of consultation between the ministries of education, employment, health, and student representatives and will be introduced for the 2001 student intake.
The current medical education system involves initially studying for a two year Diplôme d'Étude universitaires générales (DEUG), which is taken in a scientific field of learning. Then follows a year of intensive medical study to pass an extremely competitive exam, which an astounding 85-90% of candidates fail. This failure rate keeps the numbers of medical students down to