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The difficult implementation of the reform of health studies

► What does the reform that entered into force this year consist of?

Until last year, candidates for studies in medicine, pharmacy, dentistry, maieutics and pharmacy had to complete a common first year of health studies (Paces) at the end of which a very selective competition, with a number of places determined by the numerus clausus. Only the best ranked had the right to repeat a year – and many of them failed to lose a year.

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Since September, there have been two access routes: on the one hand, the specific health access path (Pass), which essentially takes up the teachings of the Paces, with in addition a minor, for example law, economics, biology or even psychology; on the other hand, the health access license (Las), a license in one of these disciplines, to which is added a minor health, at the rate of around one hundred hours per year.

► How are students selected for the second year?

There are no more contests. The very best students of the “Pass” can continue in the second year of health, directly or through an exam, depending on their level. Those who failed are no longer allowed to repeat but can, provided they have obtained all their credits, continue in the second year of the license in the discipline which was until then their minor.

Symmetrically, the very best students of “Las” can join the second year of health studies or pursue the license in their major. “With questions that remain largely open as to their upgrading at the entry of this L2, which will require a lot of additional resources”, notes Mamadou Ndoye, vice-president of Fage, a student union.

► Why are many first year students worried?

Because in this year of transition, three categories of students coexist: the “Pass”, the “Las” but also the repeaters, for which a recent decree reserves a very substantial share of places (more than 3,600 places for example for the medicine). “A figure set taking into account the chances, of the order of 30 to 50% depending on the university, that repeaters had, until now, to succeed in their second attempt to pass in the second year”, specifies the ministry. Which also ensures that young people who entered college last September must have at least as many chances of succeeding as the previous cohorts of first-time entrants, “Or at least 8 to 10%”.

The ministry says that next year there will be a marked increase in the number of places in the second year of health. “But it is now the universities which, after consultation with the Regional Health Authority, determine their reception capacities, recalls Morgane Gode-Henric, president of the National Association of Medical Students of France. However, most have not yet communicated their figures. “

And where they have been, as in Toulouse, it has not always been enough to extinguish the anger. “In dentistry, for example, there are only 18 places for 1,139 Pass students and 9 for young people from Las”, chokes a father, member of a collective. The ministry argues that unsuccessful candidates will be able, at the end of 2e, or even 3e year of license “Las”, apply again to access the second year of medicine, pharmacy, dentistry or maieutics.


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