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THE CARIBBEAN & CENTRAL AMERICA

Around 70% of International Medical Graduates (IMGs) practicing in USA are graduates of Caribbean Medical Schools World Bank Report 2013: A Time to Choose: Caribbean Development in the 21st Century. Up to 40% Scholarship available for meritorious students. Click here to apply.

About The Caribbean & Central America

Central America is the central geographic region of the Americas. It is the southernmost, isthmian portion of the North American continent, which connects with South America on the southeast. When considered part of the unified continental model, it is considered a subcontinent. Central America consists of seven countries: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama. Belize is one of the most sought after destinations for medical education in the region due to the English speaking local population and the courses being taught in English.

The Caribbean islands are a group of islands on the Caribbean Sea, commonly grouped as West Indies along with few mainland countries like Suriname, Guyana and Belize. The Caribbean is regarded as one of the top tourism destinations on earth with the pristine beaches and natural beauty.

The Caribbean region has in the last 35 years has developed into a medical education hub for international students, especially from USA, Canada, India and European countries, thanks to the American Education system and curriculum strictly followed by the universities, that have their clinical sites all over the United States. Studying Medicine at the Caribbean is a clear and easy pathway to continue medical education and practice in USA. Most students studying in the Central American / Caribbean Medical Universities have been successful in the Residency placements and are working in over 45 countries, especially USA, Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand, etc.

Education

KEY REASONS TO STUDY MEDICINE IN CENTRAL AMERICA / THE CARIBBEAN:

  • Central American / Caribbean medical schools strictly follow the US Education system and curriculum and hence are focused towards preparing Physician workforce for countries like USA, Canada, etc
  • In most Universities, students write the NBME - National Board of Medical Examiners’ examination, USA's board examinations on completion of Basic Medical Sciences and Clinical Sciences. (In other countries, the exams are all internal or conducted by the local governments' examination authority)
  • NBME is the body that conducts the board examinations for Medical students studying in the US Universities.
  • NBME is the body that conducts the USMLE examinations as well. Hence, most of these Medical universities follow 100% the same curriculum followed in USA / Canada.
  • Particularly, Pathology, Internal, Family and community Medicine modules are the same as in USA (In other countries its different)
  • High standards of living; Safe, secure and peaceful environment.
  • Shorter course durations: 4 – 5.5 Years for Indian High School passed outs
  • MCAT Scores not required
  • Premedical qualification is not mandatory in few universities for Indian students with strong academic background
  • IELTS / TOEFL scores are not mandatory in most universities
  • Dedicated USMLE training / preparations during the course of study
  • Chance to do 2 Years of Clinical rotations program in teaching hospitals in USA / UK(In other countries, it can be maximum of 12weeks CLERKSHIP)
  • Chance to do Clinical rotations in Government hospitals in the Caribbean region as well.
  • 100% free recognized post graduate training in USA / other developed countries on successful completion of USMLE or other respective licensing examinations with good score
  • Stipend paid during Post Graduate Education
  • Climatic conditions similar to India (temperatures ranging from 20⁰C to 32⁰C); good medical facilities also are available in the region that is a booming Medical tourism destination too.
  • 1000s of Indians are settled in the region hence offering comfort and tranquility for the students. By some estimates, over 2.5 million people in the Caribbean are of Indian origin.
  • Few universities here are run by Indian managements with good number of Indian students.
  • Practical and Perfectly planned education curriculum and pattern that results in high success rates in licensing examinations(Like USMLE, MCI, PLAB, AMC etc)
  • Up to 5-10 times lesser cost than studying Medicine in USA or other major countries
  • Three intakes a year: January, April and September
  • High Visa success rate and lower documentation requirements

In general terms, these universities are similar to IIT and other entrance exam Olympiad schools operating in few parts of India. Apart from imparting medical education, the universities focus completely on the licensing examination[USMLE (USA), MCCQE (Canada), PLAB (UK), AMC (Aus / NZ), etc.] and prepare the aspiring students to be successful in the same.

Hence the programs are career oriented, yet cost effective / value for money.

The Medical Universities we suggest are all recognized and approved by global bodies like

  • MCI – Medical Council of India
  • Governments of the countries they are located in
  • ECFMG – Education Council for Foreign Medical Graduates, USA
  • FAIMER’s IMED – Foundation for Advancement of International Medical Education and Research’s International Medical Education Directory
  • ACGME – Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education – Teaching hospitals in USA
  • MCC – Medical Council of Canada
  • WHO – World Health Organization’s Avicenna Directories

Program Structure:

The programs are structured such that once the students clear Step 1 of USMLE after finishing Basic Medical Sciences in Yr 2 (in some cases Yr 3) they could continue their 3rd and 4th year – Clinical studies (in few cases 4th and 5th years) in affiliated teaching hospitals in USA(Optional). Students can do the clinical rotation in UK even without clearing PLAB/USMLE.

After finishing USMLE Step 1&2 with a decent score (Either in USA / UK or Central America), Students get a Temporary / Provisional License to pursue the Residency program in USA / Canada.

“Residency” is an option for students to pursue Post Graduate training / Specialization in a teaching hospital in USA / Canada / UK, etc, on work based study mode. The PG program is 100% free of tuition fee. A very good stipend is paid during the program. Minimum Stipend ranges from US $ 3,500 and may be up to US $ 12,000 / Month. Students generally earn back what they have spent on their UG education within a span of 1 – 1.5 years. They also have very good chances of settling down in the countries from which the finish Residency.

Further, Students who complete Residency program in USA / Canada / UK / Australia / New Zealand have additional benefits back in India too. They NEED NOT WRITE MCI SCREENING TEST IF THEY ARE COMING BACK TO INDIA TO CONTINUE THEIR PRACTICE.

5 Easy Steps

  • Consult My MBBS Abroad team. Know about the eligibility criteria and requirements, entrance examinations, universities, costs, visa success rates, future career prospects, etc
  • Apply for the university of your choice with academic documents, statement of purpose, reference letter, etc
  • On successful admission and payment of a part of tuition fee, prepare the Visa documents and apply for Visa and make travel arrangements
  • On Visa approval, fly to Central America / Caribbean. Enroll with the University.
    • Study Pre Medical course (1 – 1.5 Yr if required).
    • Study Basic Medical Sciences – 5 Terms (2 Years).
    • Write NBME Board Exams and USMLE Step 1 (USMLE is optional)
    • Study Clinical Sciences in USA / Canada / UK (PLAB/USMLE not required) / the Caribbean teaching hospitals (2 Years, actually 72 weeks)
    • Write USMLE Step 2 CK and CS (Optional)
    • Write NMBE Clinical board exams
    • Graduate – Earn a Doctor of Medicine – MD degree equivalent to MBBS in India
    • Apply for Residency program in USA through NRMP after successful USMLE Step 1, Step 2 – CK and CS scores
  • Pursue Residency in USA / Canada / other countries. Study PG free of Cost, earn stipend of USD 3,500 – 8,000 /month. Earn Specialization / super specialty in desired field of medicine. Clear USMLE Step 3 and BECOME A FULLY LICENCED PHYSICIAN IN USA / Canada / other countries! FMGE (MCI Screening) not required after UG/PG/Licensing in USA, Canada, UK, Australia and New Zealand!

Universities

  • American International Medical University, St Lucia
  • American University of antigua
  • Central America Health Sciences University, Belize
  • St George’s University, Grenada

List of Current Medical Schools in the Caribbean:

S NO Medical School Country/Territory Established Degree
20 Saint James School of Medicine Anguilla(UK) 2001 MD
5 American University of Antigua College of Medicine Antigua and Barbuda 2004 MD
27 University of Health Sciences Antigua School of Medicine Antigua and Barbuda 1983 MD
10 Aureus University School of Medicine Aruba(NL) 2004 MD
32 Xavier University School of Medicine Aruba(NL) 2004 MD
6 American University of Barbados School of Medicine Barbados 2011 MD
33 Central America Health Sciences University Belize Medical College Belize 1996 MD
16 International University School of Medicine Bonaire(NL) 2005 MD
21 Saint James School of Medicine Bonaire(NL) 1999 MD
25 St. Matthew's University School of Medicine Cayman Islands(UK) 2002 MD
11 Avalon University School of Medicine Curacao(NL) 2003 MD
12 Caribbean Medical University School of Medicine Curacao(NL) 2007 MD
24 St. Martinus University Faculty of Medicine Curacao(NL) 2000 MD
3 All Saints University School of Medicine Dominica 2006 MD
18 Ross University School of Medicine Dominica 1978 MD
23 St. George's University School of Medicine Grenada 1977 MD
1 All American Institute of Medical Sciences Jamaica 2011 MD
29 University of Science, Arts & Technology Faculty of Medicine Montserrat(UK) 2003 MD
19 Saba University School of Medicine Saba(NL) 1994 MD
15 International University of the Health Sciences (IUHS) Saint Kitts and Nevis 1998 MD
17 Medical University of the Americas - Nevis Saint Kitts and Nevis 1998 MD
28 University of Medicine and Health Sciences Saint Kitts and Nevis 2008 MD
31 Windsor University School of Medicine Saint Kitts and Nevis 2000 MD
4 American International Medical University School of Medicine Saint Lucia 2007 MD
9 Atlantic University School of Medicine Saint Lucia 2010 MD
13 Destiny University School of Medicine and Health Sciences Saint Lucia 2001 MD
14 International American University College of Medicine Saint Lucia 2004 MD
30 Washington Medical Sciences Institute Saint Lucia 2011 MD
2 All Saints University College of Medicine Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 2011 MD
7 American University of St Vincent School of Medicine Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 2012 MD
26 Trinity School of Medicine Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 2008 MD
8 American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine Sint Maarten(NL) 1978 MD
22 Spartan Health Sciences University St Lucia 1980 MD

Suggested Universities

  • St George’s University, Grenada
  • American University of Antigua, Antigua
  • Spartan Health Sciences University, St Lucia
  • American International Medical University, St Lucia
  • Central America Health Sciences University, Belize

Expenses & Scholarships

Expenses:

Expenses involved in studying medicine in the Caribbean may vary from university to university. On an average, the cost may vary from INR 30-60 Lakhs overall, inclusive of food accommodation, academic and miscellaneous expenses, travel, etc. In very few universities the cost may go too high.

However, the cost involved in pursuing a similar course in USA is very high. The students, on clearing USMLE / other licensing examinations get an entry into the residency program, which is lucrative enough for the student to retrieve the cost completely in Maximum 1 – 2 Years.

Scholarships:

Scholarships are available to aspiring students based on academic performance and merit, passion towards studying medicine, need, etc. My MBBS Abroad team would support all eligible students in the process of applying for scholarships.

Application Process

Medical universities in the Caribbean have 3 intakes every year – January, May and September.

Students should apply at least 2 months prior to the course start date for successful admissions. The documents required for application are:

  • 10th std mark sheets and pass certificate
  • 12th std mark sheets and pass certificate
  • UG Mark Sheets and Certificate (If any)
  • Copy of passport
  • Statement of purpose
  • Reference letters

The documents required may vary time to time. Kindly contact My MBBS Abroad team for updated information and assistance on your application and subsequent process

Visa Information

Caribbean or Central American countries normally provide easy visa access to students planning to study medicine.

Most countries initially offer 1 Year visa for the students, which can be renewed on arrival / yearly basis.

The following documents are required for the Visa application and renewal:

  • Academic documents (10th, 12th, etc)
  • Medical Certificate
  • Passport
  • Admission and acceptance letters, etc

My MBBS Abroad team would process the complete process on behalf of the student.