Applying to International Medical Schools

Overview

There are very good medical schools in other countries and, in some instances, it may be easier to gain admission to foreign medical schools than to U.S. medical schools. You should be extremely cautious with schools that have less than a proven record of success. Some students who are driven to enter any medical school right out of college should recall that it is advisable to consider working to address weaknesses in the application for as long as two years before applying to a U.S. school. For those students with a strong interest in primary care, the preferred option is osteopathic medicine, particularly if you plan to practice in the U.S. Find out as much information as possible if you are considering a foreign medical school.

If you decide to go to a medical school abroad, you will still have to take the USMLE Step exams in order to return to the U.S. and practice here. The Educational Commission for Foreign Medical School Graduates explains this in more depth. In graduating from a medical school abroad, you will be considered an IMG (international medical graduate).

Medical Schools in Asia

Caribbean Medical Schools

Medical Schools in Israel

Additional International Medical Schools of Interest

Match Rates

There really is not any reliable or objective match rate data per school for the Caribbean and other international schools. The larger and more successful Caribbean schools that self report “match” data can be misleading.  As a general rule, International Medical Graduates (IMGs) (both US citizens and non-citizens) have an approximately 48% match rate. The PDF Document: NMRP publishes a large report specifically analyzing match outcomes for IMGs in enormous detail. 

Other Resources

For a searchable directory of foreign medical schools, visit the International Medical Education Directory.

In addition, international medical schools must annually report and meet certain eligibility requirements to remain as participants in the federal student loan programs. Additionally, an international school may be eligible to participate in the federal student loan programs, but the school’s medical program may be ineligible to participate. You MUST contact your intended school to confirm that its medical program is currently eligible and participates in the loan program.