In the US, only about 40% of applicants get into any medical school. This means that more than half of the people in the United States who apply to medical school every year don’t get in anywhere. With the shortage of physicians in the United States, it seems strange that medical school is this competitive, but many of the well-known medical schools in the US accept less than 4% of their applicants. However, there are options available to students who know they are competent, but who may not have the best of luck getting into US medical schools. Medical schools in the Caribbean take a much more relaxed approach to admissions, and while some of these schools are proven to be risky investments, if you are careful and capable, there are a few Caribbean schools that can be a great way to earn your medical degree.
For the best chance of getting a job, you should try to keep your GPA as high as possible, score high on the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE), secure good rotations during your third and fourth years, and receive strong letters of recommendation.
You may have heard that if you get your degree from a Caribbean medical school your only possibility of matching for residency is through primary care. While this may be true for some schools, many Caribbean medical schools have unique options for their students. For example, you can take a specialized path that allows you to serve international and low-resource communities. The reason a majority of students get their residency in primary care is because there are so many options open in that field. The percentage of graduates from accredited Caribbean medical schools that end up in primary care is not that much smaller than the percentage of US medical school graduates that end up in primary care. It is slightly more difficult to match for residency with a degree from a Caribbean medical school, but only slightly; if you are dedicated to medicine, you’re mostly there, you’ll just have to put in a little bit of extra effort to land the job you want to. For the best chance of getting a job, you should try to keep your GPA as high as possible, score high on the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE), secure good rotations during your third and fourth years, and receive strong letters of recommendation. There are thousands of doctors with degrees from Caribbean schools in the US. When it comes to the learning itself, the class sizes are large during lectures, but the actual learning, such as labs, takes place in small groups of 4 or 5 students.
With all the stigma and stories about medical schools in the Caribbean, it may seem like considering a Caribbean medical school at all is just not worth it. However, there are a few that are very reliable, you just have to know what to look for; find out how you can compare Caribbean medical schools to make sure you’re making a good investment