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Beware of Fraudsters While Planning to Study MBBS Abroad

Beware of Fraudsters While Planning to Study MBBS Abroad

Edited By Porishmita Paul | Updated on May 15, 2024 12:04 PM IST

Studying MBBS abroad is a dream for many Indian aspirants. The high-quality medical education, clinical advancements, technological superiority, and potential career opportunities attract thousands of international students across the globe. However, study MBBS abroad can be associated with high risks of fraud and disadvantages.

Beware of Fraudsters While Planning to Study MBBS Abroad
Beware of Fraudsters While Planning to Study MBBS Abroad

Candidates studying MBBS abroad are continuously exposed to war effects, financial disturbance, inadequate living standards, uncertain career opportunities, and fraudulent activities. Therefore, the Indian Embassy has shared some significant guidelines for students who want to study MBBS abroad. These guidelines can help students to avoid such unscrupulous conditions.

In this article, we have covered some important disadvantages of study MBBS abroad and relevant precautionary measures to avoid them. Following some important precautions can save you from major frauds and turbulence. Read the complete article to learn more about the drawbacks of study MBBS abroad and ways to handle them.

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Study MBBS Abroad: How Indian Medical Students Are Cheated?

Every year, more than 10,000 Indian students move to countries such as the Philippines, Bangladesh, Georgia, Nepal, Ukraine, Armenia, Russia, China, Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan to study medicine abroad. However, amidst the top medical universities, research facilities, potential career opportunities, and standard lifestyles, many students themselves are duped into enrolling in substandard institutions or misled by false assurances. Factors contributing to individuals being misled or duped when planning to study MBBS abroad are as follows:

  • Lack of knowledge of NMC Guidelines: According to the official guidelines of the National Medical Commission, Indian students completing an MBBS degree abroad must qualify for the Foreign Medical Graduate Examination (FMGE) screening test to continue their training as medical professionals in India. However, every year many students are not allowed to sit for the test due to violation of the guidelines. Students are easily manipulated by fraud agents and counsellors into enrolling in unaccredited universities that do not follow the NMC guidelines. As a result, students are forced to drop out and migrate to other countries for a professional certificate.

  • NEET Qualification: The qualification for the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test is a mandatory criterion for Indian students to study MBBS abroad. However, many international universities admit Indian candidates without an NEET scorecard. Such candidates are duped by misleading advertisements or marketing tactics by education agents or institutions for money. In such instances, students are restricted from taking the FMGE screening test for further practice in India.

  • Studying in the Caribbean Islands in the name of US education: The Caribbean Islands are part of the United States of America and follow a similar medical education system as the US. However, many substandard institutions enroll Indian students with poor infrastructure, overcrowded classrooms, and inferior teaching methods. Therefore, the quality of education is at risk in most of these colleges.

  • Climatic conditions, the language of teaching: The climatic conditions and language barrier are among the significant aspects that affect the quality of medical education among Indian migrants. Many students are reported as falling sick and dropping out because of extremely stressful climatic conditions. Again, the number of students leaving the country because of the language barrier is also observed very often. Counsellors help students get into these colleges, where the teaching language is both English and the native tongue, but as a result, many of them drop out.

  • Financial Exploitation and Hidden Cost: Some agents or institutions may undervalue the initial cost of study MBBS abroad excluding expenses like insurance, one-time charges, etc. As a result, many students and their families become unable to bear the financial stress and drop out in the middle of their studies.

  • Lack of Clinical Exposure and Internship: According to the NMC, a year of internship in a real-life setting is mandatory to sit in the FMGE, however, many foreign countries have limited clinical exposure and practical training due to low population density, financial constraints, and climatic conditions.

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Apply for MBBS Abroad: How Can You Avoid Scams?

Applying for an MBBS abroad can be both exciting and daunting, but making informed decisions can help you avoid potential scams. Here are 5 key things one should consider before applying for MBBS abroad:

Avoid Agents: Agents often promise easy admissions and discounts but this can lead to financial loss. Instead, seek guidance on study MBBS abroad 2024 from reputable consultancies.

Consult with Reputed Consultancies: Study medical abroad consultancies with a proven track record, can guide you through the process and help you make the right decisions.

Research about medical Universities: Look for top medical universities abroad that meet your budget and preferences. Avoid agents who push only a few universities without considering your needs.

Direct Fee Payment: Always pay your medical university fees directly to the university, not through an agent. This ensures transparency and avoids financial risks.

Plan for the Future: Consider long-term plans, such as preparing for licensing exams like FMGE or USMLE. This will help you secure your career as a doctor in your desired country.

By following these steps and seeking guidance from reputable consultancies, you can safely pursue your dream of studying MBBS abroad.

Precaution on Medical University Abroad Selection Criteria

Selecting the right university to study MBBS abroad is very challenging for international students. Recently, the risk of getting deceived by fraud agents is very high. For instance, the Indian Embassy in the UK has published an official notice regarding the illegal activities of fraud and cheating at Birmingham University, UK. Therefore, it is mandatory to know the correct information about MBBS admission abroad, the application process, and the fee structure.

  • Authentic institute websites generally have a suffix that includes the country abbreviation (e.g. for Germany - .de, for France - .fr, for the Netherlands - .nl, and for South Korea- .kr)

  • Look for the university’s official recognition and academic reputation.

  • Ensure the recognition of the degree in India or any other country.

  • Look for the eligibility requirements like English language proficiency, GPA, academic records, and other essential information.

  • Check the admission deadline and research the fee refund policies.

  • The medium of instruction at the university must be English.

  • Universities enrolling Indian students must mandatorily cover subjects like General Medicine, Community Medicine, Psychiatry, Pediatrics, Anaesthesia General Surgery, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Otorhinolaryngology, Orthopaedics, Ophthalmology, Dermatology, Emergency or Casualty services, lab services, and related sub-specialties.

  • The duration of the MBBS course in the universities should be at least 54 months.

  • Ensure that all your documents are translated by a certified translator if specified by the institution or the Embassy of the country.

Beware of the Fraud Agents While Choosing MBBS Colleges Abroad

Many students who are applying for an MBBS degree abroad get fooled by fraud agents and counsellors. These agents make false exaggerations about university rankings, placement opportunities, or unrealistic scholarship offers. Meanwhile, these agents might direct students to admission to universities that are not recognised by the National Medical Commission (NMC) of India.

Therefore, students are advised to refer to the official websites of the universities they are interested in research universities and specific programmes. Verify all details through the medical council of the host country and the NMC website. In case of hiring an agent, verify their credentials. Check whether they are registered with a recognised government body and past student records and reviews. Here are some important precautions for how to select a good agent:

  • Gather relevant information about the Educational Agent/Counsellor from both online and offline sources to ensure their identity.

  • Verify the information provided by your agent/counsellor from the official website of the university.

  • Contact your university administration or the concerned Indian Embassy to collect authentic information.

  • Remember, agents are not qualified to guarantee a job placement or settlement in the country. Do not rely on false assurances.

  • The decision on enrolment to the university is solely based on the university and your academic and professional qualifications. Do not send any money to the agent to secure a seat at the institution.

Choosing MBBS Abroad: Precaution on Safety and Security

Indian students going abroad to study medicine must acknowledge the frequent attacks and rivalries that create a nuisance to their educational journey. In recent years, there have been multiple cases of verbal and physical attacks have been encountered by students studying abroad.

For instance, in 2017, an Indian student was shot and killed in the US for a hate crime. Cases of robberies, assaults, harassment, discrimination, and violence have been registered in countries like the UK, New Zealand, and Australia. Therefore, adopting precautionary measures is an important thing for students to study medicine abroad.

Here we have included some precautions to consider before going abroad to study medicine:

  • Research the country, city, and the university you are applying to before actually moving. Look if the university or the locality has any records of student attacks or violations.

  • Keep in touch with the latest news about the country, its international affairs, relations with your home country, safety alerts, and advisories.

  • Register with the Indian Embassy to get assistance in case of emergencies.

  • Download safety apps to connect with the emergency services.

  • Learn about the local customs and traditions to familiarise yourself with the local community to avoid misunderstandings.

  • Travel in groups and try to stay connected with your loved ones frequently.

The impact of war can be very devastating for Indian students going abroad. Wars frequently destroy a nation's economy. Students studying in a war-prone country are forced to flee to their home countries which impacts their course structures and quality of education. Additionally, exposure to violence, bombings, and other security threats can lead to life risks for the students. Therefore, avoiding such countries and universities is one of the important precautions for students planning to study abroad.

Here are some precautions for Indian students studying in foreign universities:

  • Visit the Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) official website to check the latest travel advisories.

  • Avoid countries and universities with past war records and crime rates.

  • Stay informed about the latest world news and international affairs of the country you are studying in.

  • Reach out to the Indian Embassy at the time of emergency.

  • Look for insurance that includes medical emergencies, political evacuation, and trip cancellations due to war.

Understanding Fee Structure of Medical Universities Abroad

Studying abroad for Indian students is a great deal of money. Many foreign universities charge high tuition fees to international students for medical programmes. Additionally, living expenses in a foreign country are generally high. Here are some precautions to ensure financial security for Indian students abroad:

  • Research thoroughly about the study MBBS abroad fees of the universities and other course requirements. Make a rough budget list including the living expenses in the country, health insurance, and travel.

  • Look for scholarship options. Many study-abroad universities offer scholarships and grants for international students. Research government scholarships, university-specific scholarships, and private grants to sustain your living expenses in the country.

  • Most of the popular foreign countries offer part-time job opportunities for international candidates. Additionally, many universities offer on-campus internships for potential students to help them manage their course requirements. Explore part-time work opportunities in the country and research visa regulations related to them.

  • Track your expenses regularly and be mindful of your spending habits.

Precaution on English Proficiency Test

Aspirants applying for an English-speaking country for higher education must demonstrate their English proficiency through IELTS or TOEFL score. Most universities demand these test scores as a part of your application. Therefore, prerequisite knowledge about the English proficiency tests is mandatory.

  • The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is available in two formats and is accepted in over 140 countries for higher education. Meanwhile, Each institute has its own requirement for IELTS scores.

  • The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is a paper-based test or an internet-based test and is accepted in Australia and the UK.

  • For Canada and the US, either the IELTS or TOEFL are accepted for enrolment.

Precaution on Post-study Work Opportunities

Finding employment in a foreign country after graduation can be challenging. Many students remained unemployed after completing their studies abroad. Therefore, students are advised to seek early guidance from the university’s placement centre about post-study work opportunities in the country.

Try to apply for a work permit along with the necessary documents within the stipulated time frame. Gather all the necessary information about the duration of your post-study work stay in the country and plan your stay accordingly.

Is studying MBBS abroad worth it?

Studying MBBS abroad can be worth it for Indian students, but it depends on various factors such as exposure to international medical practices, cultural diversity, and potentially lower tuition fees compared to private medical colleges in India.

Many foreign universities provide high-quality education with modern facilities and experienced faculty. However, it's crucial to ensure that the university and its MBBS degree abroad are recognised by the NMC to facilitate practice in India.

Additionally, students should consider factors like language barriers, cultural adjustment, and the overall cost, including tuition fees, living expenses, and travel costs. Despite these challenges, studying MBBS abroad can provide a unique learning experience and broaden career opportunities for Indian students in the field of medicine.

Graduating from a foreign medical university may open up opportunities for international practice or further studies. However, it's important to understand the requirements and regulations for practicing medicine in different countries.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

1. Is MBBS abroad a good option for Indian students?

Yes, MBBS abroad can be a good option for Indian students for several reasons. Foreign MBBS universities offer high-quality education, well-equipped facilities, experienced faculty, and clinical facilities. Additionally, the MBBS fees in many countries are comparatively cheaper than in India.

2. What are the disadvantages of studying MBBS abroad?

There are numerous disadvantages of studying MBBS abroad for Indian students. A few significant drawbacks are as follows:

  • Lack of Recognition by NMC.

  • Challenging the MCI Screening Test.

  • High cost of living

  • Cultural inferiority

  • Language barrier

  • Inadequate clinical facilities

  • Risk of fraud agents, war, and violations

3. What forces lakhs of Indians to study medicine abroad?

The limited number of seats available in Indian medical colleges is the main reason that forces lakhs of Indians to study medicine abroad. Although, the number of private medical colleges has been increasing recently, however, due to the high tuition fees, and lack of clinical facilities students prefer to apply for MBBS college abroad. Additionally, many Indian aspirants are incompetent to qualify for the high NEET cut-offs required by top Indian medical colleges.

4. Can I do MBBS in 10 lakhs?

Yes, it is possible to study MBBS in 10 lakhs. Many abroad universities offer MBBS under 10 lakhs for Indian students. A few popular universities offering MBBS in 10 lakhs are as follows:

  • Astana Medical University.

  • North Kazakhstan State University.

  • St Teresa Medical University.

  • Crimea State Medical University.

  • West Kazakhstan State Medical University.

5. Is it safe to do MBBS from abroad?

Yes, MBBS from abroad is safe for Indian students. However, chances of fraud agents, war stimulation, and student attacks may impact the lives of students abroad. Therefore, students are advised to take precautionary measures like direct contact with the home embassy, financial security, foreign affairs, and cultural security to improve their living conditions in the country.

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