Quantcast
This forum made possible through the generous support of SDN members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you.

hy201

New Member
Joined
Apr 10, 2015
Messages
2
Reaction score
0

Members don't see this ad.
Hi,

I am a 2nd year community college student here in the US. I had to resort to community college due to financial reasons. After this semester however, I plan to transfer to a four-year university.

The question I had was if I attend a Pakistani medical school, will residency matching in the states be a very big problem for me? I am originally of Pakistani descent. I know some people locally who went to Pakistan directly after high school and have now completed their degree. In my case, I decided to pursue my bachelors degree and apply to a US school (MD, DO) and then see what happens. In other words, Pakistan is considered my backup. If I don't get into a US school then I figured going to Pakistan is a better idea than the Caribbean since the cost is drastically reduced. Also, Pakistani doctors are usually considered top-notch wherever they go.

Specifically speaking, how is Dow International Medical College in Karachi? From what I've heard, it was made for overseas Pakistanis who weren't able to get admission in their home country. Is this true? Also, how is the standard at other schools (Ziauddin, Sindh Medical, Allama Iqbal, Bahria, etc). I know King Edward, and Aga Khan are the best ones in Pakistan.

In addition, if I want to do my degree at Dow International Medical, I only have to take the SAT II tests? I thought that I had to also receive an IBCC issued equivalence. On their website, and video it says that all I need is SAT II scores. If someone could clarify, that would be fantastic. Would the medical college I apply to be interested to know about any extracurricular, volunteer, research things?
 

sinombre

Full Member
10+ Year Member
Joined
May 20, 2012
Messages
9,860
Reaction score
16,192
The question I had was if I attend a Pakistani medical school, will residency matching in the states be a very big problem for me?

Yes, it will be significantly more difficult than if you go to medical school in the US.

If you want to practice medicine in the US, go to school in the US. Going overseas is a huge gamble if your end goal is practicing here. A better backup plan would be to improve your application and reapply.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 7 users

Over9000

Full Member
Joined
May 7, 2014
Messages
296
Reaction score
92
Doctors trained in Pakistan are not considered top-notch in North America. Do not delude yourself into thinking that.

Going to medical school in Pakistan is a very large gamble if you want to come back to the US. I'll tell you that you will be practicing primary care or pathology if you go that route and are lucky enough to get into residency here.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 4 users

rodmichael82

Full Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2013
Messages
920
Reaction score
300
Graduating from Pakistan will make you a Foreign medical graduate (FMG). The doors are closing down on FMGs very quickly since most US schools have increased their class size. Hence you have more US MD students applying to the same number of residency programs. This chokes the opportunity for FMG to match in the United States. You will significantly put yourself at risk of failing board exams and even if you pass them you're still at a huge risk of never being able to practice medicine in the US if you graduate from Pakistan.
 

Bender10

New Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2015
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
if you dont go to a US med school, yes it will be more difficult
 

dushash

Full Member
5+ Year Member
Joined
Jun 27, 2015
Messages
299
Reaction score
169
Pakistani doctors are not considered top-notch in North America. Do not delude yourself into thinking that.

Going to medical school in Pakistan is a very large gamble if you want to come back to the US. I'll tell you that you will be practicing primary care or pathology if you go that route and are lucky enough to get into residency here.
-
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

PhillyMed777

Full Member
7+ Year Member
Joined
Oct 24, 2013
Messages
940
Reaction score
1,698
I've met a few people who's parents had these "brilliant" ideas of trying to beat the system like this and send their kid abroad. News flash, you can't. And if by some chance you do match here, forget about the location, choice of specialty, or quality of training. I once met this girl after I was accepted to med school who was like "oh yeah, I'm going to med school too in (insert foreign school)" straight out of high school. She seemed really naive about things and quite frankly pretty much anyone from my US MD school could prob run rounds around her ineptness.

I can't tell you how Dow Medical College is because no one I've ever met has even heard of it. Pakistani doctors are not considered top notch. Sorry, but true words.

If you want as gratifying of a career in medicine here in the US as possible, it will suit you to go to a US MD school.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users

WingedOx

Unofficial Froopyland Forum Mod.
7+ Year Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2010
Messages
7,140
Reaction score
11,278
I've met a few people who's parents had these "brilliant" ideas of trying to beat the system like this and send their kid abroad. News flash, you can't. And if by some chance you do match here, forget about the location, choice of specialty, or quality of training. I once met this girl after I was accepted to med school who was like "oh yeah, I'm going to med school too in (insert foreign school)" straight out of high school. She seemed really naive about things and quite frankly pretty much anyone from my US MD school could prob run rounds around her ineptness.

I can't tell you how Dow Medical College is because no one I've ever met has even heard of it. Pakistani doctors are not considered top notch. Sorry, but true words.

If you want as gratifying of a career in medicine here in the US as possible, it will suit you to go to a US MD school.

Honestly I know a number of other kids in similar situations and I don't think it's the parents so much trying to "beat the system" as them never quite getting over their own cultural understanding/bias of how medical education works over here compared to here. It doesn't always lead to great outcomes for the students in questions.

The medicine program that's affiliated with my current hospital has some Aga Khan grads, but as far as I know it isn't exactly a top tier program.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users

typhoonegator

Neurointensivist
Moderator Emeritus
10+ Year Member
Joined
Dec 22, 2006
Messages
1,868
Reaction score
885
If you aren't prepared to practice medicine in Pakistan after your training, then you should be very careful about your investment in time and money. It may seem discriminatory, but medical training even in "reputable" programs in Pakistan will be regarded with more suspicion than even the most pedestrian medical schools in the USA.

As an illustration, I am PI of a research lab at a hospital in Boston, and every week I get emails from individuals abroad who want to work in my lab. Their credentials are impressive, graduating from top medical universities in major cities, with exam scores placing them in the top 5-10 people in their entire country for their med school year. They want to come to the USA to do a two-year post-doc in a lab to try to get letters so they can get into a US residency, because no one will give them an interview as is. Are you going to be among the top 10 graduates in Pakistan for your year, just to have a chance for me to not delete your email? Just to have a chance to work for a tiny academic salary doing lab work for two years to try to pass your USMLE and get residency invites?
 
  • Like
Reactions: 6 users

oncology2020

Full Member
5+ Year Member
Joined
May 10, 2013
Messages
195
Reaction score
235
It's actually not impossible, i have a friend who is pakistani who went to med school straight after high school, had Cs in lower level high school biology and chemistry, never took the mcat or organic chemistry and just finished residency and is now an attending in the US...its easier for a foreign medical graduate who is a US citizen to get residency here than a non US citizen due to work visa issues..

you just need to make sure you do really well on usmle step 1 and step 2. He got a 220 on step 1 and a 250 on step 2 and he got into a community program in IM. There are so many resources out there for usmle that it's easier now to do well if you study the right way. But if you get low scores or worse fail even once on any of usmles, you will not get residency in US so it's a huge risk but def not as impossible as its being made here on sdn
 
Last edited:

Winged Scapula

Cougariffic!
Moderator Emeritus
Lifetime Donor
Joined
Apr 9, 2000
Messages
39,959
Reaction score
18,704
It's actually not impossible, i have a friend who is pakistani who went to med school straight after high school, had Cs in lower level high school biology and chemistry, never took the mcat or organic chemistry and just finished residency and is now an attending in the US...its easier for a foreign medical graduate who is a US citizen to get residency here than a non US citizen due to work visa issues..

you just need to make sure you do really well on usmle step 1 and step 2. He got a 220 on step 1 and a 250 on step 2 and he got into a community program in IM. There are so many resources out there for usmle that it's easier now to do well if you study the right way. But if you get low scores or worse fail even once on any of usmles, you will not get residency in US so it's a huge risk but def not as impossible as its being made here on sdn
It's not that it's not possible or hasnt been done before but it is going to be increasingly difficult as the number of US medical school grads reaches parity with the number of residency positions. It's always been my sense that this is the issue with parents pushing their children to return to the home country: they know someone who did it 20 years ago and assume that it's easy to do so now.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users

Winged Scapula

Cougariffic!
Moderator Emeritus
Lifetime Donor
Joined
Apr 9, 2000
Messages
39,959
Reaction score
18,704
Honestly I know a number of other kids in similar situations and I don't think it's the parents so much trying to "beat the system" as them never quite getting over their own cultural understanding/bias of how medical education works over here compared to here. It doesn't always lead to great outcomes for the students in questions.

The medicine program that's affiliated with my current hospital has some Aga Khan grads, but as far as I know it isn't exactly a top tier program.
Actually, Aga Khan has a very good reputation.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 4 users

WingedOx

Unofficial Froopyland Forum Mod.
7+ Year Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2010
Messages
7,140
Reaction score
11,278
Actually, Aga Khan has a very good reputation.

Yeah, I got that impression, though as has been implied upthread, the AK grads who are here are generally going to be at the tops of their classes at one of the best schools in their country but matching with mid-low tier US MD/DO grads. I made a point in another thread that good PDs should be hyper-aware of the training at local and state programs, but expecting them to know most foreign schools unless their program has specific experience with their grads is a little much to expect.

If the residents on this board did an informal survey of their PDs I wonder what percentage would be able to differentiate AIIMS from Bollywood Upstairs Medical College.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
Members don't see this ad :)

Mad Jack

Critically Caring
7+ Year Member
Joined
Jul 27, 2013
Messages
37,915
Reaction score
73,868
Yeah, I got that impression, though as has been implied upthread, the AK grads who are here are generally going to be at the tops of their classes at one of the best schools in their country but matching with mid-low tier US MD/DO grads. I made a point in another thread that good PDs should be hyper-aware of the training at local and state programs, but expecting them to know most foreign schools unless their program has specific experience with their grads is a little much to expect.

If the residents on this board did an informal survey of their PDs I wonder what percentage would be able to differentiate AIIMS from Bollywood Upstairs Medical College.
I'd keep in mind that, until recently, FMGs filled up a massive number of residency positions. Many of those PDs either are FMGs themselves or work with FMGs, so there's more knowledge floating around in regard to what foreign schools are decent than one might expect. It's super program specific though, for obvious reasons.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

Mad Jack

Critically Caring
7+ Year Member
Joined
Jul 27, 2013
Messages
37,915
Reaction score
73,868
OP, in 2014 36 Pakistani US IMGs matched their preferred specialty, compared with 140 who did not. Are those odds you really want to play? And the match is only getting more and more competitive each year, so by the time you're matching, those numbers will be SUBSTANTIALLY worse.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users

NeedToStudy

Full Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2014
Messages
457
Reaction score
62
OP, in 2014 36 Pakistani US IMGs matched their preferred specialty, compared with 140 who did not. Are those odds you really want to play? And the match is only getting more and more competitive each year, so by the time you're matching, those numbers will be SUBSTANTIALLY worse.

Where did you get this statistic from? I know that there are stats out there for IMGs vs AMGS but how did you get a stat specifically for US citizen IMGs from Pakistan?
 

Shams al Deen

Full Member
10+ Year Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2012
Messages
660
Reaction score
502
Pakistani doctors are not considered top-notch in North America. Do not delude yourself into thinking that.

.
That's racist bud

Yeah I was surprised when OP wrote that. In fact I never heard that Pakistani doctors are considered top-notch anywhere in the world, not only North America. Rather opposite most probably if anything.

This one is too.
 

Over9000

Full Member
Joined
May 7, 2014
Messages
296
Reaction score
92
That's racist bud



This one is too.

I can see how what I wrote would be misconstrued as culturally prejudiced.

What I should have said, and will edit for clarity is that doctors trained in Pakistan are not considered top-notch in North America.

Race has absolutely nothing to do with it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

gonnif

Rule One: Take a Breath
Lifetime Donor
10+ Year Member
Joined
Jul 26, 2009
Messages
24,257
Reaction score
41,609
OP, in 2014 36 Pakistani US IMGs matched their preferred specialty, compared with 140 who did not. Are those odds you really want to play? And the match is only getting more and more competitive each year, so by the time you're matching, those numbers will be SUBSTANTIALLY worse.


That says it all. The residency squeeze, where more US MD/DO grads are being produced with little increase in residency slots, is affecting the IMG/FMG much more. I can no longer recommend off shore schools to applicants as the risk is too great for having huge debt and no ability to practice medicine
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users

Resi-aku-jhh

New Member
Joined
Aug 16, 2016
Messages
1
Reaction score
1
Yeah, I got that impression, though as has been implied upthread, the AK grads who are here are generally going to be at the tops of their classes at one of the best schools in their country but matching with mid-low tier US MD/DO grads. I made a point in another thread that good PDs should be hyper-aware of the training at local and state programs, but expecting them to know most foreign schools unless their program has specific experience with their grads is a little much to expect.

If the residents on this board did an informal survey of their PDs I wonder what percentage would be able to differentiate AIIMS from Bollywood Upstairs Medical College.

Giving my personal experience, I went to Aga Khan in Pakistan:

I agree with most posts here, time is changing and it will get more and more difficult. I went to Aga Khan and currently I am at Johns Hopkins in Plastic surgery (you can verify from their website of current residents), best grad from my class went for Pediatric surgery at UF another competitive specialty, best grad from class above me matched at Stanford Neurosurgery, the best grad from class junior to me is also at Johns Hopkins and matched Ophthalmology @ Wilmer and is doing retina now. There are at least 6 clinical faculty at Hopkins now from AKU. From Harvard to Penn to Mayo to Cleveland Clinic to Vanderbilt, there are graduates from AKU who did training in surgical specialties there. I have names and contacts if someone wants to verify. From my personal experience, the school is better than many mediocre schools in US and definitely better than ANY school in Caribbean. At least they have their own hospital which is Joint Commission accredited with plenty of endowments and clinical research. HOWEVER, due to several reasons, country, visa and increasing number of US graduates and the reasons listed by others in this thread, it is definitely getting difficult to match at a competitive specialty or a top-notch place. In our years (2007-8), it was a rare instance for anyone to go un-matched, now at least 10% go un-matched and even those who match are mostly in community or just average academic programs with some exceptions. A lot of my friends back then and myself did electives/sub-I at great places, had great references which I think was a key factor but it is very difficult to arrange those now. Even after those it has become very challenging coming from Pakistan.
For all those reasons, I would recommend US citizens to stay in US for med-school. Plus Aga Khan is not cheap anymore, I paid $3K per year as a local, now its $16K for locals, and almost double for foreigners, so why spend that much money. But if you are from Pakistan, its a great place to go if you can afford and be in the top 100 of 10k applicants.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Top