The Complete Guide to Studying Medicine in Malaysia

Find the best medical schools to study medicine in Malaysia. Check out this course guide to see pathway, requirements, and compare institutions and fees.

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If you've always wanted to study MBBS (Medical Degree) in Malaysia, our guide will show you everything you need to know.

From revealing the best medical universities in Malaysia to letting you know the detailed steps on how to be a doctor in Malaysia, this guide has got you covered.

Read on for more insights on studying a Medical Degree and becoming a doctor!

Manipal University College Malaysia (MUCM)

Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS)

One of the oldest MBBS programmes in Malaysia, with 49 batches to-date (as at 2022).

#1. What Is Medicine?

CG- Medicine-What is MedicineMedicine relates to diagnosing, treating and preventing a sickness, disease or injury. It involves utilising healthcare practices to maintain and restore the health and wellbeing of a person.

From treating the common cold to performing complex surgeries, doctors play a significant role in keeping today’s society well and healthy. When you are sick or unwell, a doctor performs an examination to find out the cause of your illness (also known as a “diagnosis”). The doctor then suggests suitable treatments for you and prescribes the right medication to help you recover.

As part of your Medical Degree, you will gain extensive knowledge in medical sciences and the right clinical skills to provide effective patient care. This includes being able to accurately diagnose and treat patients, explain treatments to patients and collaborate with other healthcare professionals.

Medical Fields and Specialties

CG- Medicine-Various fieldsMedicine as a whole is broad and multidisciplinary. There are many departments within medicine and you will require years of training and experience before you are able to specialise in a particular field.

Here are some of the specialties within medicine in major hospitals.

Field What Is It All About
Anaesthesiology Relates to providing pain relief to patients prior to, during and after surgery
Internal Medicine Relates to the diagnosis and treatment of illnesses, including cancer, infections and diseases affecting the heart, blood and kidneys, among others
Emergency Medicine Involves providing immediate medical attention to patients with an acute illness or serious injuries to prevent death or disability
Obstetrics & Gynaecology Relates to medical care for women, particularly care during childbirth, and diseases of the female reproductive system
Orthopaedics Focuses on injuries and diseases of the body's musculoskeletal system, including bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles and nerves
Paediatrics Deals with medical care of infants and children
Surgery Deals with injuries and disorders that require surgical intervention

As part of your clinical training during your Medical Degree and your 2-year housemanship, you will be exposed to many of these major departments. This allows you to gain a good understanding of them before deciding on your medical specialty.

For more medical specialisations, you can check out the National Specialist Register.

Manipal University College Malaysia (MUCM)

Foundation in Science

Curriculum is designed to prepare you for a career in health science, particularly medicine or dentistry

#2. Entry Requirements to Study Medicine

a) What subjects are needed to study medicine?

To study a Medical Degree, you must have studied these subjects for SPM or equivalent, based on the Malaysian Medical Council’s (MMC) requirements for medicine:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Mathematics or Additional Mathematics

As for A-Level, STPM or equivalent, the required subjects are:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics or Mathematics

In addition to that, you must also have a level of competency in English to be able to successfully complete a Degree in Medicine.

b) What are the requirements to study medicine?

These are the general entry requirements to pursue a Degree in Medicine:

  • A-Level: BBB, ABC or AAC in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics or Mathematics
  • STPM: BBB, ABC or AAC in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics or Mathematics
  • Australian Matriculation: Average of B in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics or Mathematics; and 5Bs in SPM including Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics or Additional Mathematics
  • Foundation in Science or Matrikulasi: Minimum CGPA of 3.00 in Biology, Chemistry and Physics or Mathematics; and 5Bs in SPM including Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics or Additional Mathematics
  • UEC: B5 in 5 subjects including Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics and Advanced Mathematics
Take Note: Entry requirements for some universities may be higher, so do make sure you check the details carefully.

#3. Studying a Medicine Course

CG- Medicine-What will you studya) What subjects will you study for a Medical Degree?

Most Medical Degrees are split into 2 phases — Phase 1 and Phase 2.

Phase 1 (the first 2 years of your degree) focuses on pre-clinical training in an academic setting where you’ll learn the theoretical basics of medical science. Some of the subjects you’ll study are:

  • Anatomy
  • Biochemistry
  • Microbiology
  • Pharmacology
  • Pathology
  • Clinical Medicine

Phase 2, which consists of the remaining years of your degree, focuses on clinical training where you will undertake clinical rotations at hospitals and health clinics. You will gain hands-on experience with patients and get the chance to try out various clinical disciplines such as general medicine, surgery, paediatrics and internal medicine.

b) How long is an MBBS Degree?

A Medical Degree is 5 years long in Malaysia.

c) How much does it cost to study medicine in Malaysia?

The total estimated fees to pursue a Medicine Degree in Malaysia for 5 years can range from RM250,000 to RM650,000.

#4. How to Become a Doctor in Malaysia

cg-medicine-pathway-2022This is the general pathway to becoming a doctor in Malaysia.

  • Step 1: Complete a pre-medical course (e.g. A-Level, STPM, Foundation in Science) after SPM.
  • Step 2: Enrol in a MBBS Degree that's typically 5 years long.
  • Step 3: Undergo 2 years of housemanship, which is a compulsory internship for all aspiring doctors.
  • Step 4: Once you've completed your housemanship, you can apply for full registration as a medical officer with MMC.
  • Step 5: You will need to continue 2 years of compulsory service with the government.
  • Step 6: If you want to be a specialist (e.g. anaesthesiologist, gynaecologist, paediatrician), you will need to pursue postgraduate studies, which take about 4-5 years. You'll also need to undergo 2-4 years of supervised training as a specialist.
  • Step 7: Finally, once you’ve met the criteria to be a specialist, you can register yourself with MMC as a specialist.

To summarise, it generally takes a total of 8-9 years to become a fully registered doctor after completing SPM, and more than 10 years to become a specialist.

PRO TIP

Make sure your Medical Degree is recognised by the Malaysian Medical Council. Otherwise, you may risk not being able to practise medicine in Malaysia.

#5. Should You Study Medicine?

CG- Medicine-Is it right for you 02a) Is medicine the right course for you?

If you find yourself pursuing medicine for the money, prestige or due to pressure from your parents, we highly encourage you to consider your decision carefully. This is because medical school can be demanding, time consuming and expensive.

Here are some questions to ponder before deciding to be a doctor:

  • Do you consider yourself analytical and investigative?
  • Do you enjoy conducting science experiments?
  • Do your friends say you're a good listener?
  • Do you have excellent grades in science and maths?
  • Can you endure long hours and working night shifts?
  • Are you prepared for a lifetime of study?

Manipal University College Malaysia (MUCM)

Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS)

One of the oldest MBBS programmes in Malaysia, with 49 batches to-date (as at 2022).

b) Skills required to be a doctor

Here are some key skills a good doctor should have:

  • Compassion and a genuine concern for others
  • Tenacity and determination
  • Ability to think critically and solve problems
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Strong listening and communication skills when dealing with patients
  • Good judgement and strong decision-making skills

#6. Job Options with a Medical Degree

Upon graduating with a Medical Degree, most medical graduates will go on to fulfil the requirements to become a medical doctor.

If you would like to be a medical specialist, you will need to pursue the relevant postgraduate qualifications. Here are some medical specialist careers:

  • Paediatrician
  • Psychiatrist
  • Dermatologist
  • Orthopaedic Surgeon
  • Ophthalmologist
  • Radiologist
  • Vascular Surgeon

If you prefer alternative career options in non-clinical fields, you can consider the following jobs:

  • Hospital Administrator
  • Medical Researcher
  • Medical Journalist
  • Lecturer
  • International Aid Worker

#7. Best Medical Universities in Malaysia

If medicine is right up your alley, then check out some of these Malaysian Medical Council recognised universities below. You can also use our university comparison tool to compare other medical schools in Malaysia.

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