MBBS in Albania

MBBS in Albania - white and blue boats on body of water during daytime
Albania, a Southern European country known for its rich history and cultural heritage, is emerging as a promising destination for Indian students pursuing MBBS abroad. With its six-year MD program recognized globally and an affordable cost of living, Albania offers a viable alternative to traditional MBBS destinations. This article explores the advantages, costs, and eligibility requirements for studying MBBS in Albania, providing a comprehensive guide for prospective students.

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Albania is a country in southern Europe that shares borders with Greece and water bodies with Italy. It is situated on the western side of the Balkan Peninsula, near the Strait of Otranto.

The nation was officially declared independent in 1912. Albanians speak a language known as shqip or shqipe. The Lek is Albania’s official currency and has a reasonably advanced healthcare system. The government provides the vast majority of services.

Degree NameDoctors of Medicine (MD) equivalent to MBBS
Medium of InstructionEnglish
Duration of Course6 Yrs. incl. Internship
Internship Period2 Years
License to International StudentsPermitted
Currency1 Lek~0.8 Indian Rupees (INR)
Population2.8 Million

Education System in Albania

Albania’s formal education age is 18 years old. Students who desire to pursue professional degrees, such as those in medicine, engineering, or business, can enrol in institutions in Albania. The table below depicts the four components of Albanian education.

PrimaryBasic First Stage1–46–104
MiddleBasic Second Stage5–911–155
SecondaryHigh School10–1215–183
TertiaryUniversity levelProfessional19-256

Both government-run and private higher education institutions are present in Albania. Currently, there are a total of 40 higher education institutions, 15 public and 25 private; there are three universities that conduct medicine programmes in Albania. Of all three, only Western Balkan University accepts all international students and conducts the medicine programme in English.

Western Balkan UnivTiranaEnglishPrivateAdmitted
University of TiranaTiranaAlbanianPublicOnly European
Our Lady of Good Counsel UnivTiranaAlbanian& ItalianPrivateOnly European

Comparison of MBBS in India and Albania

If we compare the medical education systems of the two countries, it reveals that they are remarkably similar.

College TypePublic/PrivatePublic/Private
Tuition FeePublic:1-3 Lacs/Private:60-90 Lacs48000 USD~38 LacsINR
Duration4.5 Years6 Years
InfrastructureGood to AvgGood
Internship1 YearIncluded in 6 Yrs
Study PatternAsian-Pre, Para & ClinicalEuropean ECTS Based
Clinical ExposureHigh (Govt)/Avg (Pvt)High (begins 2ndyear onwards)

Advantages of studying MBBS in Albania

Advantages of studying MBBS in Albania

European Standards: European educational standards are followed by all universities.English Taught: At Western Balkan University, Albania, you can study medicine in English, similar to India.Clinical Exposure: The chance to work in a hospital is available to you as early as your second year. It includes having the opportunity to interact with patients and learn every method for the upcoming five years.NMC Acceptance: The MBBS degree from an Albanian Medical School in English fulfils NMC’s requirements. Thus, students may take the NEXT exam after completing the course in Albania.Paid Internship in Hospitals: Starting your second year, you can work in hospitals and get a stipend. A student who works in a hospital affiliated with the Medical University can earn between $3,000 and $5,000 a year.

Disadvantages of studying MBBS in Albania for Indian Students

While there are many advantages to studying medicine in Albania, there are also certain challenges. You should also consider the issues listed below regarding Albania when planning to move out.Small Indian Community: India’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MEA) records no more than 100 Indians who work for international corporations, are involved in projects, or are students. This number is low compared to any other nation.

Tuition fee for Medicine program in Albania

The tuition fee in Albania for the Medicine Programme is divided into two parts.Self-Finance: Students enrolled on this programme must pay the entire tuition fee to the university. All three universities allot seats under the self-finance scheme.Scholarship Based: Unlike Western Balkan University, the other two universities restrict their scholarship programs solely to European students, as per the terms of the European Education Agreement.

The tuition fee in Albania for the Doctor of Medicine (MD) programme is approx. 8,000 USD for a year for international students.

Cost of Indian Food in Albania

Cost of Indian Food in Albania

When choosing whether to attend an Albanian medical university, you should consider the availability of Indian food in Albania. Since there aren’t many Indian students in Albanian universities, there isn’t an Indian mess there. Students who want to eat Indian food may need to prepare food for themselves, costing around 100–120 USD a month.

There aren’t many Indian restaurants in Albania, but those that do may charge you the equivalent of 800-1000 INR for a dinner big enough to sustain two people. Likewise, they are ideal for occasional dining.

Hostel facilities in Albanian Medical Universities

Students should not bother much about the accommodations in Albania. Few universities provide dormitories for international students to live in, and they are also quite economical. However, many Indian students may not look forward to this opportunity due to a lack of privacy and cultural differences. Still, it is a good opportunity for those who want to understand the cultures of various ethnicities across the globe. Such dorms cost around 30–40 euros a month.

Staying in a private apartment in Albania is an alternative to a dorm. The cost of a 1-bedroom apartment in Tirana’s city centre is approx. 150–200 euros and the same type of accommodation on the outskirts will cost only 100–120 euros. Students can share the apartment to make it affordable for them.

Living Cost in Albania for Indian Students

The cost of living in Albania is very low compared to other European countries. It is slightly higher than the living costs of metro cities in India like Mumbai, Bangalore, and Delhi.

Combo meal (fast food restaurant)400-500
500g of boneless chicken breast300-350
1 litre of whole fat milk140
12 Eggs, large250
1 kg of Tomatoes150
500g of local cheese300
1 kg of apples130
1 kg of potatoes80
2 litres of Coca-Cola140
Bread Pack (Big)50
Utilities: 1 month for 1 person in 45 m2Studio Apartment10000-12000
Monthly ticket public transport1000-1200
Standard men’s haircut400-500

Eligibility Criteria for MBBS program in Albania

Admission to MBBS at Albanian Medical Institute for Indian students in 2024 will requireA student must have 50% in PCB in Class XII Must have qualified NEET (category specification applies).Age above 17

Admission deadlines for the MBBS program in Albania

For information on the annual intake and application deadline for the Albanian Medical University, see the table below.

IntakeMonthLast Date to Apply
AutumnSeptember 20241st June 2024
SpringFebruary 202515th November 2024

The admission process starts in June and ends in September. It is important to note that the VISA process for Albania takes a long time, which is approx. 4-6 weeks; hence, applying early is advisable.

MBBS Admission Process in Albania

MBBS Admission Process in Albania

The admission process for MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery) programs in Albania may vary slightly depending on the specific university or institution. Here is a general description of the admissions procedure though:

  1. Research and Selection: Research and selection are important to make an informed decision, and eligibility criteria must be met.
  2. Eligibility Criteria: Examine the eligibility requirements established by the university or institution.
  3. Application: An application form must be obtained from the university’s official website or admissions office.
  4. Documents: Prepare the necessary documents 
  • Completed application form.
  • Academic transcripts and certificates from secondary school or equivalent (Biology, Chemistry, and Physics).
  • Proof of language proficiency if the medium of instruction is not your native language. This may require language proficiency test scores or certificates.
  • Identification documents (such as a passport or national ID card).
  • Passport-sized photographs.
  • Any other documents the university specifies, such as recommendation letters (LoR).
  1. Application Submission: Applications must be submitted within the specified deadline.
  2. Entrance Examination: Some universities in Albania may require applicants to pass an entrance examination.
  3. Interview (if applicable): Some universities may conduct interviews during the selection process. 
  4. Selection and Admission: After evaluating applications, entrance examination results, and interviews, the university will announce the list of selected candidates and issue an admission offer letter.
  5. Confirmation and Enrollment: Once accepted, applicants must pay any required fees and complete the enrollment process within the specified deadline.

Visa Processing in Albania

Visa Processing in Albania

The visa process in Albania varies depending on the purpose of the visit. To determine the type of visa you need, visit the Albanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website or the nearest Albanian embassy or consulate in your country. 

  1. Application Form: Obtain the visa application form from the Albanian embassy or consulate in your country or download it from their official website.
  2. Documents: Gather the necessary documents for your visa application, such as:
  • A valid passport with at least six months of validity or beyond the intended stay
  • Passport-sized photographs
  • Completed visa form
  • Proof of purpose of visit
  • Financial means to support your stay in Albania
  • Travel itinerary
  • Health insurance coverage. 
  • The embassy or consulate requires any extra paperwork.
  1. Submitting the Application: Submit the application and pay the applicable visa processing fee.
  2. Visa Interview: Show up at the embassy or consulate’s visa interview.
  3. Visa Processing: Visa processing times may vary, so applying well before your intended travel dates is advisable. You may be required to provide additional documents or information during processing.
  4. Visa Decision: If approved, you may be required to collect your visa from the embassy or consulate or it may be affixed to your passport and returned to you via mail.

It’s important to note that the visa requirements and procedures can change, so it’s recommended to check the official website of the Albanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

PG Option after MBBS in Albania

Medical License in India after MBBS in Albania

During MBBS study, a student realizes the importance of being a specialist. They also understand the competitiveness to secure MD/MS Seat in Govt College. If we look at the success ratio to get PG in Govt Medical College, which is 11% we can say that only 1 out of 10 will get PG Seat, whereas the chances of getting a Clinical specialty is 1 out of 20 applicants. The PG journey will be very difficult, or else students should have enough money to get a paid seat in Pvt Medical College, which may be in Crores!

Total Applicants NEET PG 2023SpecialtyGovt Med CollegePvt Med College
SeatsSuccess RatioSeats
2.09 Lacs
MD (Non Clinical)15K8.6%10K
MS (Clinical)8K4.6%5K

Do you feel early preparation and the right mentorship will pave your dream of becoming a specialist?

NMC has already announced the introduction of the NEXT Exam in India in 2023. This exam will replace all Medical PG exams in India. The exam will be conducted in two parts: NEXT-1 and NEXT-2. The Objective of the NEXT-1 is to assess the Student’s Knowledge of Pre, Para, and Clinical Subjects on the National Level. Only after qualifying for NEXT-1 will any medical student be eligible for an internship. After completing the internship, Students must go through NEXT-2, which will assess their Clinical skills, Patient Management, and Medical history. Those who clear NEXT-2 are awarded a license to practice, and rankers of NEXT-1 will get PG seats of their choice.

Why should Indian students consider studying MBBS in Albania?

Albania offers quality medical education at a reasonable cost, with globally recognized MD programs taught in English. The country’s educational standards and affordable living costs make it an attractive destination for Indian students.

What is the duration of the MBBS program in Albania?

The MBBS (MD) program in Albania typically lasts six years, which includes two years of internship, providing comprehensive clinical exposure.

How much does it cost to study MBBS in Albania?

The tuition fee for the MD program in Albania is approximately $8,000 per year. The total cost, including living expenses, is around 35-40 lakhs INR for the entire duration of the course.

Which are the top medical universities in Albania?

The top medical universities in Albania include:

Western Balkan University, Tirana
University of Tirana
Our Lady of Good Counsel University, Tirana

Are there English-taught MBBS programs in Albania?

Yes, Western Balkan University offers an MD program in English, which is suitable for international students, including those from India.

What are the eligibility criteria for MBBS admission in Albania?

The eligibility criteria for MBBS admission in Albania include:

50% in PCB (Physics, Chemistry, Biology) in Class XII
NEET qualification is mandatory for Indian students
Age above 17 years

What are the living costs for students in Albania?

The cost of living in Albania is low compared to other European countries. On average, students spend around €250 per month on living expenses. Accommodation costs range from €100-200 per month for private apartments, and hostel fees are around €700 per year.

Can Indian students practice medicine in India after completing MBBS in Albania?

Yes, Indian students can practice medicine in India after completing their MBBS in Albania by clearing the NEXT exam, as per the latest NMC guidelines.

What are the career prospects after completing MBBS in Albania?

Graduates can pursue medical practice in India by clearing the NEXT exam or pursue further studies and practice in countries like the USA, UK, and Germany. The MD degree from Albania is globally recognized, providing ample career opportunities.

Are there any challenges Indian students might face while studying in Albania?

Some challenges include the small Indian community in Albania, the need to adapt to a new culture, and the lack of Indian food options. However, these challenges can be mitigated by preparing in advance and being open to new experiences.

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