Is an MBBS degree valid in India without a 12-month internship in Russia

Is an MBBS degree valid in India without a 12-month internship in Russia?

An MBBS degree obtained in Russia without completing a 12-month internship in India is not sufficient to practice medicine in India. However, the situation is complex and currently under discussion. Here’s a breakdown:

Validity of the Degree:

  • Yes: The Medical Council of India (MCI) recognizes MBBS degrees from Russia if the university is listed in the World Health Organization (WHO) Directory of Medical Schools. Most accredited medical universities in Russia meet this criteria.
  • But: The National Medical Commission (NMC), the successor of MCI, has recently raised concerns about the validity of the new 5-year MBBS program in Russia, which excludes the 1-year internship.

Internship Requirement:

  • Yes: All Indian medical graduates, including those who studied abroad, must complete a one-year compulsory internship in India before practicing medicine.
  • Unclear: The NMC has not yet issued a definitive statement on whether the clinical residency included in the new Russian MBBS program can be considered equivalent to the required internship in India.

Consequences of Incomplete Internship:

  • Cannot Practice: Graduates with a Russian MBBS degree without completing the 1-year internship in India cannot practice medicine in the country.
  • Limited Opportunities: They are also ineligible for government jobs or postgraduate studies in India.

Options for Completing Internship in India:

  • Apply: Graduates can apply for a one-year internship at government hospitals or medical colleges recognized by the NMC.
    Limited Availability: Internship positions are limited, leading to competition.
  • Financial Challenges: The stipend may be inadequate, making it difficult for some graduates.
    Standardization: Internship quality may vary across hospitals.


  • Clarification Needed: The NMC needs to provide a clear and timely decision on the new Russian MBBS program and internship requirements.
  • Collaboration: Government should work with Russia to ensure recognition of the revised program.
  • More Internship Positions: Create more internship positions in India.
    Standardization: Standardize internship programs for quality training.


While the MBBS degree itself may be valid, practicing medicine in India requires completing the 1-year internship. The current situation is uncertain due to the new Russian program and the NMC’s pending decision. Stay updated on the latest developments and seek guidance from official sources before making any decisions.

The validity of an MBBS degree from Russia without completing the 12-month internship in India depends on the NMC’s final decision regarding the revised program and internship structure. While the degree itself is recognized, practicing medicine in India requires clearing the FMGE and completing a one-year internship within the country. Aspiring medical students should carefully consider the uncertainties surrounding the internship requirement and the challenges they may face upon returning to India.

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