No Sizeable Increase in Foreign Students Pursuing Medical Education in Nepal

October 08, 2021
Last updated October 10, 2021

Several Indian students have come to pursue medical education this year. According to Dilliram Luitel, Member Secretary of the Medical Education Commission, students who pass the Common Entrance Examination and the examinations of their respective countries can be admitted to study at the undergraduate level of medical education right away. "This year, nearly 400 undergraduate students from India, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and East Timor traveled to Nepal for their higher studies."

The Medical Education Commission set the cost of MBBS at NRs. 4,032,250, which when multiplied by 1.6 equals NRs. 6,437,200, the real cost of MBBS for international students. The Institute of Medicine at Tribhuvan University, on the other hand, has estimated the cost of MBBS for international students to be $90016, which is more than NRs. 10,000,000. International students must pay a fee equal to one-third of the amount to be considered for admission.

Similarly, the BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences (BPKIHS) has set the cost of MBBS for international students at $ 74,555, with a third of the fee due at the time of admission, while Kathmandu University (KU) has set the cost of MBBS for international students at NRs 6,437,720.

This indicates a considerable disparity across the country's medical institutions and a lack of control and standardization among all medical schools. The unplanned moves of medical colleges were intended to be managed by establishing a single fee structure for all existing schools. However, this has yet to be enforced. Nepal has the potential to be an excellent destination for medical education, but experts say the government must preserve fee uniformity.

Testimonials of Foreign Students

MD Rafi Omar, a South Indian physician, recently arrived in Nepal to pursue higher education while studying the country's political and natural history. Currently based in Dharan, he is fluent in Hindi, English, Maithili, and Nepali. After arriving in Nepal, he decided to learn Nepali at the Campus of International Languages. He is currently doing his MBBS at BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences.

He came to Nepal hoping that the financial load would be lighter than in India and that the quality of education would be better where doctors like Sanduk Ruit were born. But, while he is skeptical of today's educational climate, he is adamant about obtaining excellent education by enhancing the academic atmosphere at BPKIHS.

Imran Khan from Uttar Pradesh has also joined the BPKIHS with the exact expectations. In the meantime, Satyam Kumar and Vaibhav Pal have been accepted into the Karnali Academy of Health Sciences (KAHS) for MBBS. Everyone shared their wishes to have affordable access to a high-quality education.

7500 International Students in Nepal in the Last Five Years

Over the last five years, 7,516 international students have studied in Nepal, according to the Immigration Department. Nepal played host to 1,782 students in 2017, 2,176 in 2018, 1,927 in 2019, 983 in 2020, and 648 in 2021. According to statistics, there are 968 students from the United States, 904 students from South Korea, 835 students from the United Kingdom, 733 students from China, 483 students from Sri Lanka, 471 students from the Maldives, 165 students from Australia, 115 students from Canada, and students from over 200 countries in Nepal.

Nepal Rashtra Bank's annual report showed that remittances from international students amounted to Rs 1.45 billion in FY 77-78, Rs 2.23 billion in FY 076-77, and Rs 2.25 billion in FY 075-76.

Emigrating Students, a Continued Norm

Between fiscal years 2077 and 78, a total of 29,978 students received No Objection Letters (NOCs) to study in 57 different countries, incurring Nepal Rs 24.95 billion in abroad education. In the fiscal year 2076-77, 34,094 students received NOC, according to the Ministry of Education. Nepal spent Rs. 25.81 billion the following year. 63,259 students filled out the No Objection Letter during the fiscal year 075-76. In that year, a total of 46.24 billion three lakh rupees was issued.

Former vice-chancellor of Tribhuvan University, Kedar Bhakta Mathema, claims that if a clean educational atmosphere is established in Nepal by making educational institutions academic, billions of rupees will be saved annually. He argued that if fees were standardized and industries and factories were available for employment, Nepal might become a popular destination for international students.