MBBS in India vs Abroad

MBBS in India vs abroad: MBBS in India has always been the first preference of Indian students. However, with less than 80,000 seats available in India for more than 15 lakh NEET aspirants, getting a seat is a tough task. This is where the option to study MBBS abroad comes up. But most people are not sure about studying abroad and think that it is not useful. This is the wrong conception and studying MBBS abroad is a fantastic and good choice if you are hardworking and have a good academic record. The choice you need to make is whether you want to start your education abroad or wait and try again for MBBS in India. You need to understand and compare your options and chances of studying MBBS in India vs abroad.

Here is a comparison of MBBS in India vs abroad

The following comparison is of MBBS in India vs abroad. By India, we mean all the medical colleges in India including AIIMS and by abroad, we refer to the following countries:  UkraineRussiaKyrgyzstanKazakhstanChina, the PhilippinesBangladeshArmeniaGeorgia, Nepal, Belarus and countries in the Carribean.

ComparisonMBBS in IndiaMBBS in Abroad
Duration4.2 years + 1-year Internship4 to 6 years to complete the degree
CostVery low fees in government colleges, ₹75 lakh plus budget in private collegesBudget starts from ₹18 lakh total including tuition fee, hostel fee and Indian mess fee
Marks required in NEETQualifying marks at leastQualifying marks at least
Ease of getting admissionVery high marks in NEET required or a high budget for a private seat in India. Still, only 80,000 seats available for 15 lakh plus students.Admission is easy even in government universities ranking in top 500 colleges in the world as per QS Ranking. More than 12,000 Indian students take admission abroad for MBBS each year.
Exams to qualifyNEETNEET, no requirement of SAT, TOEFL, IELTS etc.
Exit Exam for LicenseQualifying NEXT compulsory for licenseQualifying NEXT compulsory for license
USMLE TrackNoYes
A better option if you want to settle in EuropeNot a good optionUkraine, Russia are better options than India
RecognitionWorldwideWorldwide

Let us discuss these points in detail:

Duration – MBBS in India vs abroad 

The MBBS abroad duration in India is a total of 5.2 years from 2019 session onwards. It earlier used to be 5.5 years. This is inclusive of 1 year of internship.

MBBS abroad duration varies from country to country, in some countries, the duration including an internship in that country is 4 years while it is 6 years in others. Here is a table showing MBBS abroad duration:

CountryDuration of Course(Years)
MBBS in PhilippinesAfter graduation - 4
After 12th - 5 to 6
MBBS in Russia5.8
MBBS in Ukraine5.8
MBBS in Bangladesh5
MBBS in China5 + 1 Year Internship
MBBS in Kyrgyzstan5
MBBS in Armenia5 or 6
MBBS in Kazakhstan5
MBBS in Georgia6
MBBS in Bulgaria6

Cost – MBBS in India vs abroad 

If you get a government seat in India, then the cost is going to be very less. However, cost of doing MBBS in a private college in India is very expensive and also, getting a seat is not on your choice.

In case you are thinking how much it cost to study MBBS abroad, then you might be surprised to know that the overall cost including tuition fee, hostel fee, mess fee starts from ₹17-18 lakh. MBBS abroad is cheap compared to MBBS in India.

Marks required in NEET – MBBS in India vs abroad 

In both cases, you need to qualify NEET. To get admission in India, you either need to score 600+ marks for government colleges or you need to have a high budget.

For MBBS abroad, you need to get qualifying marks in NEET. There are some universities which might ask for 200 marks in NEET but in most cases, you just need to get the qualifying marks. Also, admission is on a first-come-first-serve basis, you have the option to choose.

Ease of getting admission – MBBS in India vs abroad

When it comes to India, you can’t get admission in the college you want, you can only choose from the college of which you clear the cut-off. More than 10 lakh students will not even have one option open to them for MBBS in India. However, when it comes to MBBS abroad, you just need to qualify NEET. You will get the option to choose from a vast number of colleges. It is easy to get admission to study MBBS abroad.

Exams to qualify – MBBS in India vs abroad

For MBBS admission in India, you not only have to qualify NEET but you also have to get a high score. In 2019 session, Global Medical Foundation sent students to study MBBS abroad with about 560-570 marks. Getting a high score might still not be enough to get a seat in India.

For admission in almost any college in countries such as Ukraine, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Bangladesh and Georgia, there is no entrance exam, however, qualifying NEET is a must. For admission in the MBBS (MD) course in the Philippines, there is one entrance exam called NMAT.

USMLE Track – MBBS in India vs abroad

While there is no USMLE track in India, you will find medical universities in abroad which also trains the students for USMLE. USMLE is a three-step examination to get a PG seat in the US.

Recognition – MBBS in India vs abroad

For a degree to be recognised in India, the college must be MCI approved. This is true for both – Indian as well as the colleges abroad. In 2019, as per the new NMC bill, after completing MBBS from India or abroad, the student must qualify NEXT to get a license in India.

As far as international recognition is concerned, the degree from almost every college in countries such as Ukraine, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Bangladesh, the Philippines and Georgia is recognised worldwide.

Who should not go for MBBS abroad?

The biggest question is if you should join a medical college in abroad? The first thing to note is that you need to qualify NEET for admission in abroad. MCI recognised universities in countries such as Ukraine, Russia, China, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan etc won’t give admission to students who did not qualify NEET. In case you are one of those who expect to qualify NEET or have qualified NEET in the last 3 years, you can apply for abroad.

Now, two types of students don’t need to go for MBBS abroad:

  • those with 600+ marks
  • students with a very high budget

If you are in these two categories, then you will most certainly get admission in India. In 2019 session, we at Global Medical Foundation sent many students who had between 550-570 marks in NEET to study MBBS abroad. This means that getting top 10,000 rank in NEET might not be enough for admission in India.

Biggest Dilemma for students

The biggest challenge that students face is if they should take a drop or go for MBBS abroad. If you just completed class 12th and appeared for NEET but didn’t get good marks, then you might be thinking about this question. This question can only be answered by you and you alone.

As a student, you will know if taking a drop is worth it or not. If you are certain that you can score at least 580+ marks in NEET (or adequate marks depending on the quota that applies to you) or if you are certain that somehow, you will get a seat in India next year, then take a drop. But keep in mind that there are only 80,000 seats for more than 15 lakh aspirants.

In case you feel that your scores won’t go above 550 or that your marks will be in the range of 135-450 then taking a drop might not be the best idea. The better thing to do is save time and go to study MBBS abroad.

You need to see what is best for you. Sit down, contemplate and make the best decision for yourself. The end goal is to become a doctor and for that, you need to be hardworking. Remember that there are many ways to be successful, you need to choose the best path for you.

Abroad MBBS value in India

Does an MBBS degree from abroad have any value in India? The answer is Yes! But for your abroad MBBS degree to be valid in India, you need to qualify the screening test. In its current version, the test is called Foreign Medical Graduate Examination or FMGE in short. This exam will soon be replaced by the National Exit Test or NEXT.

NEXT will not only act as the screening test for foreign medical graduates, even the students who study MBBS in India will be required to give NEXT. This exam will also be used for PG medical admissions in India, thus replacing NEET PG.

After coming back with a medical degree from countries such as Ukraine, Russia, Bangladesh, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, China, the Philippines, Mauritius, etc., you need to qualify the screening test and you abroad MBBS degree will be valid in India.

The degree from all these countries is equivalent to the basic MBBS degree in India. Abroad MBBS value in India is on the same level and equivalent to the MBBS degree from India.

Who should go for MBBS abroad?

Studying MBBS abroad is the second choice for most students though the trend is slowly changing. The first thing that is required is that you are NEET qualified. You should definitely go for MBBS abroad:

  • if you are hardworking, this is the most important thing!
  • you really want to become a doctor, it has been your dream and you want to do whatever it takes to become one
  • in case you have already given NEET multiple times but you are unable to get a seat in India
  • if you scored between 135-550 marks in NEET and you can’t get a seat in India
  • in case that you can’t afford fees of private colleges despite scoring good marks in NEET, the fees for MBBS abroad starts from ₹11.50 lakh total. You can complete MBBS abroad within a budget of ₹18 lakh.


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