How Not To Be A Victim When Attending An Offshore Medical School

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How Not To Be A Victim When Attending An Offshore Medical School

With the recent apparent closing of Kigezi


we are reminded of the real economic and career dangers people risk when they attend unproven and often poorly run offshore medical schools.

In traditional medical schools there are rules and regulations and oversight groups watching them. For instance in the US, a school must abide by the laws of:

1. State education departments
2. LCME http://www.lcme.org/
3. Federal agencies that oversee loans

If you attend a school in another country, 1st world countries,like UK,France,Germany,etc. have similiar agencies but some of the developing countries agencies are weak. While it is impossible for outsides to know why Kigezi is having problems, in the US medical schools would rarely have problems since they are under the spotlight of budgets of states (and the private ones are parts of universities that have budgets that take care of them).

So what can you do to protect yourself?

1. Pick a school that you have checked the financial situation of. That can be done by doing a Dun and Bradstreet financial check on them (your bank or accountant can help you).
2. Pick a school that has a history of success i.e. you can talk to graduates,see lots of their students in residencies or practice, and they have students licensed.
3. Look at the leadership of the school and check them out; do they have a history of achievement in business or medicine themselves? This is especially important if you are looking at a new school; talk to the medical boards where they were previously working to see how they are seen by their peers. If they were never licensed or practiced anywhere you can find, beware.
4. Check with the govt. agencies where they are located and be sure they are chartered, allowed to have students do clinicals,etc. where they are located, and that their students can be licensed. Kigezi was not located in the country where it is chartered for instance.
5. Speak with state medical boards and the Federal Govt. loan folks and find out the history of the school you are considering.

When you are investing hundreds of thousands of dollars this is too big of a risk to leave to just making a decision to go because they will accept you. Boards like valuemd.com and studentdoctor.com will give you hints but aren't completely dependable upon the information they give; because sometimes it is wrong and you must verify it totally.

There are lots of resources on the internet available to students to do this. If you can't find the info you need, ask others. I'd be glad to help you look for it yourself.

Dean Hughson/AzSkeptic [email protected]