India has a huge need for doctors. The WHO recommended doctor patient ratio is 1:200 . But because of the paucity of seats in India the actual ratio is more like 1:1800. This tremendous gap puts enormous burden on the already stretched health care system . Since the beginning of the last decade large numbers of students have been going to China and Philippines for pursuing their MBBS and have been remarkably successful . Many thousands have returned to practice in India and a few have also landed seats in the highly competitive post graduate examinations in India.
Bangladesh as a destination for students looking to pursue medical education has lately caught the imagination of students from the South East Asian region.
For one the fees in Bangladesh Medical Colleges are reasonably priced ranging from 24lacs to about 30lacs.
Secondly Bangladesh having the same colonial roots as India also has English as one of their major languages and the academics are entirely conducted in English. This enables Indian students to quickly adjust to the environment and also to start their classes immediately without having to learn another language to follow the medical curriculum.
This is not the case with China and Russia or the other East European countries where a minimal knowledge of the native language is a must before the classes can get started even if the medium of instruction is in English in these countries.
MCI like curriculum
The medical syllabus in Bangladesh is the same as that followed by the Medical Council of India . In fact historically Bangladesh has been a part of India and there is very little difference between Bangladesh and West Bengal in terms of Climatic conditions or disease patterns.
The proximity between India and Bangladesh is another reason why students are opting to study here. From West Bengal’s capital city Kolkata , the journey to Bangladesh takes barely 45 minutes by flight and is overnight by either road or train. This is a boon to the students who can slash their travel costs further reducing their overall expenditure on their MBBS course.
The quality of academic instruction is very high and with strict controls on quality of content and quality of delivery , students passing out from medical colleges in Bangladesh usually find it a breeze to clear the licensing examination i.e the FMGE or MCI Screening Test which is conducted by the NBE.
The numbers of students going to Bangladesh in the future seems to be set to grow unless there are some major overhauls in the Indian medical education scenario. Only time will tell.