Study Medicine Abroad and Practice in India - How?


Cyril Zachariah
Updated on May 10, 2023 08:46 PM IST

Wish to obtain your MBBS degree abroad but practice in India? Here are the steps you need to follow and complete to pursue your medical aspirations in India. Learn about FMGE and the other licensing regulations required to practice medicine in India.

Study Medicine Abroad and Practice in India - How?

Studying medicine abroad and practising in India is a dream that many Indians nurture. Highly qualified teachers, exposure to great medical technology and infrastructure, learning that focuses on practice and a supportive and progressive environment are what make studying MBBS abroad for Indian students a worthwhile experience. The aspirants are spoiled with choices of countries and colleges to study medicine overseas in case they fail to secure a seat in Indian medical colleges owing to the highly competitive environment in government colleges and massive fee structures in private medical institutions. 

Practising medicine in India for Foreign Medical Graduates (FMGs) requires students to appear for Foreign Medical Graduate Examination (FMGE). Once they qualify for the examination, they will get a license to practice in India. The FMGE screening test is conducted by the National Board of Examination. Doctors with foreign degrees are highly revered in India. The fact cannot be overlooked that an international medical degree is as valued as a domestic degree. This article will provide you with detailed guidance about practising in India after completing MBBS abroad. 

How to Practice in India After Studying Medicine Abroad?

As mentioned earlier, there are thousands of MBBS colleges abroad, where one can pursue quality education in medicine. Some countries may be cheaper, while others can burn your entire pocket. Nonetheless, to practice in India after studying medicine abroad, there are steps that each aspirant must complete to be legally allowed to become a doctor.

In India, the National Medical Commission (NMC) is responsible for ensuring the safe and legal practice of medicine in India. In other words, the NMC looks over the different aspects of medical education and practice, ensuring that the citizens of India have access to a medically and legally safe healthcare system.

What Do I Need to Practice Medicine Legally in India?

If you are looking to practice medicine in India and are not sure what the necessities are, it's simple - you require a license. Every doctor in the country is required to possess a license issued by the National Medical Commission (NMC). The license offers you the freedom to practice medicine anywhere in the country.

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How Do I Acquire a License to Practice Medicine in India?

With an international degree in your hand, looking to legally practice medicine in India, acquiring a license is the final cog in the steps to build a career in medicine. However, acquiring a license may not be as easy as it seems.

To acquire the license to practice medicine in India, all aspirants must clear a screening test which is currently organised by the National Board of Examination (NBE), under the guidelines of the NMC.

The screening test, also known as the Foreign Medical Graduates Examination or popularly known as the FMGE Screening Test, is a compulsory examination for all aspiring practising doctors. Over the past few years, FMGE has been known to be one of the more difficult examinations to crack in India. Recent records have shown that less 20% of the applicants can clear the examination and practice medicine.

About the Foreign Medical Graduate Examination (FMGE)

The Foreign Medical Graduate Examination is a screening test that Indian students with a foreign MBBS degree have to qualify for to get a license to practice in India. The examination is conducted by the National Board of Examination twice a year mostly in June and December of a given year. The screening test is designed in a way to qualify and provide a valid license to practice medicine anywhere legally in the country. The screening test is something that all UG and PG medical graduates are required to clear to practice in India.

FMGE Important Dates 2023

The FMGE application forms will be released for the June session in February 2023 after which students must start filling up the form as soon as possible within the deadline. The admit cards will be available on the website in due course and the examination is tentatively scheduled for June 2023. Here are the key dates for FMGE June 2023:



FMGE June 2023 Online Application Form Release Date

February 9, 2023

FMGE June 2023 Application Deadline

March 8, 2023

Issuance of FMGE June 2023 Admit Card

May 2023

FMGE June 2023 Exam Date

June 2023

Announcement of FMGE June 2023 Results

June 2023

The application forms for the FMGE exam 2023 December will be out sometime during October post which students can start enrolling themselves for the exam. Check out the important dates for the FGME December 2023 dates in the table below:



FMGE December 2023 Application Form Release

2nd Week of October 2023

FMGE December 2023 Application Deadline

Last Week of October 2023

Issuance FMGE December 2023 Admit Card

2nd Week of December 2023

FMGE December 2023 Exam Date

 December 2023

FMGE December 2023 Result Date

3rd Week of January 2024

FMGE Eligibility Criteria 2023

As is the case with most examinations, there are certain criteria that each candidate is required to participate in the examination. An Indian citizen who has obtained medical qualification overseas and is desirous to get provisional or permanent registration with the National Medical Commission or any other State Medical Council shall have to appear for a screening test for that purpose. The minimum eligibility criteria to appear for FMGE in India is as follows:

  • Academic Requirements: Candidates must possess a current, recognised MBBS degree and must present the required documentation to substantiate their eligibility for the corresponding MBBS degrees. Before the deadlines for the FGME, all candidates must submit their primary medical certifications or credentials.

  • Domicile Requirements: All applicants must be residents of India or another country and hold a current medical licence, which should be verified by the Indian Embassy.

  • Students must have acquired an “Eligibility Certificate” from the National Medical Commission according to the ‘Eligibility Requirement for taking admission in an undergraduate medical course in a Foreign Medical Institution Regulations, 2002”.

  • It is a mandatory requirement to qualify for the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) for Admission to the MBBS course abroad. Furthermore, the NEET results will be valid for three years after its declaration. 

Note: Students who have attained the MBBS degree from a few countries are exempted from appearing for the FMGE examination. Among these countries, students who received their respective MBBS degrees from the USA, UK, Australia, New Zealand and Canada are exempted from appearing for FMGE.

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FMGE Application Process 2023

Here's how FMGE candidates should apply for the exam if they wish to practice medicine in India after acquiring an MBBS degree abroad, this year:

Step 1: Visit the official site of NBE -

Step 2: Click on the 'FMGE 2023' tab on the homepage.

Step 3: It will redirect you to a new website. Click on "new registration".

Step 4: Enter all the required details.

Step 5: Click on "Applicant Login" and fill out the application form.

Step 6: Pay the application fee and submit the form.

Note: The National Medical Commission is working on replacing the FMGE exam with the National Exit Test, which all medical graduates must clear in order to receive their medical license to practice medicine in India legally.

FGME Selection Process 2023

The candidates who have appeared for the national level examination, i.e. FMGE, will be able to participate in the selection process. Under this type of examination, the candidates will be selected or deemed qualified based on their performance in the examination.

As per the guidelines of the National Board of Examination (NBE), the candidates will be considered selected or qualified for Provisional or Permanent Registration with the Medical Council of India, which has now been replaced by the National Medical Commission (NMC). For this, candidates must have secured a minimum score of 150 out of the total 300 in FMGE.

Qualifying for the screening test is the only way to practice medicine in India after gaining basic graduate medical education in any one of the different MBBS colleges abroad. Therefore if you wish to build a stable medical career path in India, then you must register yourself with the NMC and gain a license. As mentioned above, a few countries are exempted from the FMGE exam, however, attaining a license for the same is necessary.

Popular Universities to Study MBBS Abroad

If you are interested in pursuing an MBBS degree in one of the international universities and colleges across the globe. Check out this list of top MBBS universities in the world for you.

Name of University/College


University of California, San Diego


University of Pennsylvania


University of Toronto


Queens University


Free University of Berlin


University of Hamburg


University of Cambridge


Imperial College London


University of Melbourne


Australian National University


An MBBS degree abroad can open doors for practice in both foreign countries and India. Those who want to serve their nation, generally return with their medical degree and appear for the FMGE which allows them to get the license. The NMC is also planning to enhance and change the guidelines regarding practising medicine in India and decided to replace FMGE with the National Exit Test (NExT). Aspiring candidates are advised to keep track of the latest guidelines related to practising medicine in India. 

Register and connect with experienced study abroad counsellors who can help you apply to your dream course abroad.

You can also write to us at and clear out all doubts regarding international education and admissions.

Wish to Study MBBS Abroad?


Is NEET required to study MBBS abroad?

No, NEET is not a compulsory exam that Indian students must give in order to pursue MBBS abroad. Several universities across top countries for MBBS courses offer admission on the basis of test scores attained in other popular medical entrance tests. However, attempting NEET and then applying for MBBS abroad is the more logical and better option for Indian MBBS aspirants.

Is FMGE necessary to practice medicine in India with a foreign MBBS degree?

Yes, FGME is necessary for those with a foreign MBBS degree wishing to practice medicine in India. In order to be registered by the National or State Medical Council, foreign MBBS degree-holders will be required to clear the FGME test. However, students with an MBBS degree from countries like the US, Canada, the UK, Germany and Australia along with other countries are exempted from appearing for FMGE.

Should I study MBBS abroad?

Yes, studying MBBS abroad is a good idea for Indian students who wish to create a lucrative career for themselves. Moreover, India allows Indian students with a foreign MBBS degree to practice medicine legally after clearing a screening test. Additionally, if you have gained an MBBS degree from the US, Canada, Germany, Australia, the UK, etc, would be exempted from giving the FMGE to practice medicine in India.

What universities are the best to study MBBS for Indian students?

Scattered across the globe, there are thousands of MBBS colleges abroad where Indian students can pursue valuable medical education. Some of the top universities to study MBBS abroad for Indian students include the University of California San Diego, the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Toronto, the University of Melbourne, the University of Cambridge, the Free University of Berlin and many more.

What are the top countries for MBBS for Indian students?

Candidates interested in pursuing MBBS abroad can choose from a sea of options, however, some of the top countries to study MBBS for Indian students include the USA, the UK, Canada, Germany and Australia among other countries. Moreover, earning an MBBS degree from one of the countries will also exempt you from needing to clear the FMGE exam to practice medicine in India.

Why is FMGE needed for a medical license in India?

Foreign MBBS degree holders are required to apply for the FMGE screening test to be qualified to receive their medical license to practice in India, however, some countries are exempt from taking the test. Nevertheless, the FMGE test allows foreign medical graduates to become registered medical practitioners in India and legally be allowed to practice medicine in the country.

Can I complete my medical internship in India with a foreign MBBS degree?

While the NMC has offered an exceptional offering allowing foreign MBBS degree holders to complete their medical internships in India, foreign medical graduates are not allowed to complete their medical internships in India. As per the current regulations designed by the NMC, foreign medical graduates must fully complete their degrees abroad, which includes completing the necessary internships before being able to practice medicine in India.

Are foreign MBBS degrees valid in India?

Yes, foreign MBBS degrees are valid in India and anyone with a foreign MBBS degree will be able to practice medicine in India. However, there are strict eligibility criteria for foreign MBBS graduates, such as studying an NMC-recognised MBBS degree abroad with the necessary credits and course duration. Additionally, the NMC is in the process of revamping rules for foreign MBBS graduates wishing to practice medicine in India.

How can foreign doctors practise medicine in India?

Any foreign MBBS degree holder can practice medicine in India after confirming their eligibility for the same and clearing the FMGE screening test. However, currently, the National Medical Commission, the medical education regulator is in the process of replacing the FMGE exam with the NExT exam, while also reforming the regulations surrounding foreign MBBS graduates practising medicine in India.

Can I practice in India after completing MBBS abroad?

Yes, all international students who have earned an MBBS degree recognised by the National Medical Commission (NMC) are eligible to practice medicine in India after clearing a screening test. All international MBBS graduates must clear the Foreign Medical Graduate Exam (FMGE) after ensuring that they abide by the NMC eligibility criteria for foreign medical graduates to practice medicine in India.

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