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How to Size Up a Country’s Medical School Training

It’s very easy to dismiss developing world medical educational institutions. It’s very easy to look at the equipment that they have, as well as the training of their staff, and come up with some wild guess as to the quality of the medical practitioners coming out of those institutions. Unfortunately, we can’t let our stereotypes automatically lead us to some sort of conclusions.

In fact, we can’t jump to conclusions because a lot of doctors who practice medicine under the UK’s national health system actually come from developing countries, and guess what? They are excellent doctors. Also, there are lots of doctors in the United States who are doing really well financially who originally came from developing world medical school systems. So what gives?

Well, maybe it’s not really the particular country that’s an issue. Maybe it’s not the fact that they are developing world medical schools and developed world medical schools. Instead, it really all boils down to passage rates.

We really just need to focus on the percentage of people coming from a certain situation who pass the medical board exams in the United States or in the United Kingdom. If we agree to stipulate to reduce all the variables to that one factor, then the picture becomes clear.

The picture would reveal that regardless of the country origin, whether we’re talking about Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, North Asia or anywhere in between, it really boils down to the individual because you can take somebody who’s not really driven and who is really not that ambitious as well as who’s not really that bright, and get them to pass their country’s highest medical school program.

The school is highly prestigious, it has the right staff, it has the right equipment, it seems like it has everything going for it. However, if you process the wrong individuals through such institutions, it’s anybody’s guess whether they would pass the exam or not.

This is the key because nobody can give you ambition, nobody can give you drive, nobody can give you passion, nobody can give you focus. So focus on that instead of a particular country’s medical school training infrastructure.

The infrastructure might be there, the dollars and cents might add up, everything might be in the right place, but if the quality of the people coming in and out of those institutions is off, then it’s anybody’s guess how well they do in the objective medical practice entrance exams in the jurisdictions they’re applying to. Do you see how this works?

It really all boils down to individual drive because, believe it or not, somebody with the right level of motivation, passion and focus can take what would otherwise be objectively a low quality medical school education, and still make it all the way to the top. Not just in their country, not just in their region of the world, but in the United States and in the United Kingdom.

It happens quite a bit. So never leave the individual out. While there is such a thing as an average, the average ultimately doesn’t really serve much of a purpose. So be that one person who can do quite well regardless of the medical school you come from.