The decision comes as several educationalists expressed concerns over India's BME sector at a recent meeting, held at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras.
To note, GATE 2020 will be conducted on February 1, 2, 8, and 9, 2020, in 25 subjects.
Meeting discussed challenges faced by BME grads
The IIT-M meeting was organized by the institute's Biomedical Engineering Group of Applied Mechanics Department along with representatives from sister-IITs.
It was chaired by Prof. V. Jagadeesh Kumar, Dean (Academic Courses), IIT Madras, and co-chaired by Prof. Neelesh Vasa, the chairman of GATE last year.
The meeting discussed the challenges faced by BME graduates in India and the need for development in the sector.
"This is a boon for everyone working in healthcare"
Prof. M Manivannan, Biomedical Engineering Group, Department of Applied Mechanics, said, "This is a boon for everyone working in healthcare in India. This has the potential to make Biomedical Engineering as the most sought-out program in India as in other parts of the world."
Manivannan, who organized the meeting, also said that making GATE for BME possible was a team effort.
Until now, BME grads could only give two GATE papers
So far, graduates of biomedical engineering could only appear for two GATE papers: IN (Instrumentation and Engineering), and EC (Electronics and Communication Engineering), since they were closer to the BME curriculum.
However, they would have to work harder to prepare for other aspects of IN and EC, leaving them at a disadvantage.
Consequently, BME graduates would score lesser ranks in comparison to other streams.
BME development could lessen reliance on foreign medical equipment manufacturers
The new GATE paper would not only help lessen the burden of BME graduates, it'd also help contribute to the sector as a whole.
BME is vital for the development of medical instruments and equipment.
However, with the lack of skilled manpower in India, foreign manufacturers are often relied on.
The exam would help shape more skilled professionals, who could help boost research here.
GATE is jointly conducted by IISc, and the seven IITs
GATE is conducted jointly by the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, and the seven IITs in India: Delhi, Bombay (Mumbai), Roorkee, Madras (Chennai), Guwahati, Kanpur, and Kharagpur.
Qualifying GATE is mandatory for admissions into government institutions, such as Public Sector Undertakings, Defence Research, and Development Organization (DRDO), etc; premier educational institutions in India, and a few abroad.