The Nicolae Testemitanu Medical University in Moldova, an Eastern European country and a former Soviet republic, plans a strategic partnership with India, according to Ion Ababii, its Rector.
During a recent tour to Kerala, Ababi met with medical officials in the state, the home to most of Nicolae Testemitanu’s 350 Indian students.
The MBBS program in Moldova is completely based on the practical education system. The Faculty of General Medicine at the university has the winning formula for preparing the students for passing the national licensing examinations and integrating them into the hospital system.
The syllabus of the degree is on the level of the syllabus used in the US universities
1st year- 3rd year pre-clinical years ( includes course subjects and theoretical seminars)
3rd year – 6th year clinical rotations
Course duration: 6 years
Easy visa process (40-60 days)
English as a medium of instruction for MBBS program in Moldova
The healthcare system is very strong in Moldova. It has been developed since past years. The hospitals being equipped with ultra-modern equipment, the new surgical blocks and general medical departments being built in Chisinau – capital city.
There are 246 physicians for every 1,00,000 public. There are more than 500 healthcare centres available in Moldova
Nicolae Testemitanu, which has 6,200 students, modelled its residency programme after the one at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
Another partnership has made the University of North Carolina School of Medicine’s millions of online books and articles available to Nicolae Testemitanu faculty and students.
The European Union (EU) gave the university $5.1 million to build a state-of-the-art medical simulation centre, where students practice their treatment skills on specially built mannequins.
The most exciting new partnership, Ababii said, is one with the Dental Board of California, which approved Nicolae Testemitanu’s dentistry programme in May of 2018.
This led to California students enrolling in Nicolae Testemitanu’s dentistry programme for the first time in September of 2018.
Indians are the second-largest group of international students at Nicolae Testemitanu, behind the 1,500 Israelis. The university has been attracting Israelis for almost three decades.
That’s because many Moldovans emigrated to Israel after the break-up of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, were aware of Nicolae Testemitanu’s reputation, and recommended it to family members.
Over the years, Nicolae Testemitanu has provided several thousand doctors, dentists and pharmacists to Israel’s healthcare system, Ababii said.
Indian students began coming to Nicolae Testemitanu in 2000, after the university started offering courses in English. Until then, its classes were taught in Moldova’s national language of Romanian, in Russian, or French.
“Our decision to begin teaching in English was a milestone in our internationalisation efforts. Not only did we begin getting students from India, but also from the Middle East, Africa and other countries where English is either a first or strong second language, Ababii said.
Ababii said that Nicolae Testemitanu graduates are well trained that most can pass the difficult doctor licensing examinations in the US, Britain, Israel and other developed countries.
A testament to the quality of India’s doctors, Ababii said, is the fact that about a third of US doctors are of Indian origin. “Our Indian students are bright, diligent and hard-working,” Ababii said.
A key reason the university is forging a strategic partnership with India is that it wants more of them. Another reason is that India suffers from a chronic shortage of doctors — which Nicolae Testemitanu can help alleviate.
“I’ve read that Indian medical schools graduate a little more than 50,000 doctors a year. In a country the size of India, with more than a billion people, it’s clear that this is not enough. We can help ease some of the crunch,” Ababbi added.