Seven-and-a-half steps for Nepali MBBS docs who wish to do internship in USA updated Oct 7th 2016

Going to USA? Here are seven steps for you to take.

  1. Read this visa info from USA

The US Embassy in Kathmandu published directions for the B-1 visa, that applies to MBBS and MDs of Nepal. at the site they also added a pdf document in Nepali, which seems to be a new twist – I don’t recall them publishing translations before.

Medical practitioners who have completed their medical degree and are now seeking to enter the United States to complete their United States Medical Licensure Exam (USMLE) Steps II, II C/S, and/or III should apply for a B1 visa. Those who wish to travel to the United States to interview for residency programs should also apply for this visa. For more info go to

while we are at it, here is the recent (April 26th) notice from US Embassy about a scam – don’t send any money to third-parties when you should be dealing directly with the embassy for H1-B visa –

2) hook up with MedChrome and start thinking of options now

There is a new site named Medchrome, and they recently published an informative piece that lists all the possible places for PG training, both in and out of Nepal. The number of Medical Colleges in Nepal was expanded a few years back, and right now the PG process is in the process of being expanded. Until they catch up, the process of finding a PG residency has become competitive.

A Nepali friend of mine got his MBBS degree last year, has completed his internship, and is working as a Medical Officer. This particular person is one of the brightest and most personable docs I have met in Nepal. (and there are many such). He told me he wishes to go to USA to take an internship.

3. Take TOEFL and USMLE.

for USA, the USMLE is more than just medical knowledge. You will need to role play some conversations with native English-speakers pretending to be patients.

he’s been to the website of a medical school that has a program he would like to enter. But he asked for help as to how to proceed, because he knew he needed to get USA license. “I know I have to take TOEFL and USMLE but what else do I do?” he asked.

Oct 17th update: Here is the link to a 44-slide PowerPoint about USMLE. This was delivered as part of ASK Nepal’s workshop in Kathmandu earlier in October. it is an excellent summary!

4) watch these videos and get ready for role play.

Role play tests your bedside manner.

step 2 CS is where the role play comes in. On YouTube there is a playlist with 200 videos.

5) take BLS and ACLS at Center for Medical Simulation in Kathmandu.

If you are going outside Nepal, you will be competing with others who have taken these and who have the knowledge as well as the card.  Likewise, if you a Medical Officer and you are inside Nepal, be advised that you will be competing with some MBBS graduates here who have this course under their belt. ACLS uses role play in English, as well… more reason you need to enroll!

I know there are many other Nepali MBBS graduates studying for USMLE. I don’t consider myself expert on USMLE, or on medical credentials for that matter, but – it looks the rules are very clear: you can’t take USMLE until you have passed the ECFMG process.

6) If you get to this point, you need an account with ECMFG.

I did a websearch and found the site for the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates. The “about” statement says:

International medical graduates (IMGs) comprise one-quarter of the U.S. physician workforce. Certification by ECFMG is the standard for evaluating the qualifications of these physicians before they enter U.S. graduate medical education (GME), where they provide supervised patient care. ECFMG Certification also is a requirement for IMGs to take Step 3 of the three-step United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) and to obtain an unrestricted license to practice medicine in the United States.

Among other things, you can sign up  for a free electronic newsletter, delivered by email, if you go to their site.

Also, you can start the application process, online.

The Fee for ECMFG?

It’s not free.  the initial application costs 6500 nrs. Before you are finished, if you do the whole process involving USMLE, you pay about $3000 USD, not including the cost of a trip to USA to take USMLE step 2 CS.

Do You know any medical school administrators here in Nepal?

ECMFG has newsletters specifically for medical school administrators. These cover a variety of things, such as how to participate in the international system of hosting USA medical students in Nepal. Please ask your medical school faculty to join this site.

7) find an internship in USA

A friend sent me this link to a list of places in USA that offer externships for foreign students ( When I am in Nepal, I’m a videshi; when you are in USA, you are the videshi!)

7.5) optional reading…..

Thank you getting all the way to the end. First, read this other blog entry, about CCNEPal. It’s about the 2017 plans. We offer a Nepali-based course in ACLS ( not the “official” Heart Association course; it’s adapted for Nepali nurses and doctors).

For more perspective on Nepal health care,  read my book

About Joe Niemczura, RN, MS

These blogs, and my books, and videos are written on the principle that any person embarking on something similar to what I do will gain more preparation than I first had, by reading them. I have fifteen years of USA nursing faculty background. Add to it fifteen more devoted to adult critical care. In Nepal, I started teaching critical care skills in 2011. I figure out what they need to know in a Nepali practice setting. Then I teach it in a culturally appropriate way so that the boots-on-the-ground people will use it. One theme of my work has been collective culture and how it manifests itself in anger. Because this was a problem I incorporated elements of "situational awareness" training from the beginning, in 2011.
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1 Response to Seven-and-a-half steps for Nepali MBBS docs who wish to do internship in USA updated Oct 7th 2016

  1. Aarati badal says:


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