How to Become a Doctor (Medical Officer) in Malaysia?

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What is the Education Pathway for Students After SPM or IGCSE/O-Levels to Study Medicine/MBBS in Malaysia?

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Presently, there is an oversupply of general practitioners in Malaysia but we have a great need for Specialist Doctors. There are 42 accredited training hospitals in Malaysia with trainees who are doing their housemanship and the waiting time for an available slot is as long as 9 months now or more. Although, there are too many GPs in Malaysia, if you plan to become a Specialist, you should have no worries about a career in the rewarding field of medicine.

Students after SPM or IGCSE/O-Levels planning to study the medical degree to become a Doctor in Malaysia will need to meet the entry requirements set by the Malaysian Medical Council (MMC) and Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) to enter the Pre-University Programme. Read on to find out the education pathway to become a Doctor.

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Medical Programme or MBBS Education Pathway in Malaysia

After SPM or IGCSE/O-Levels, it will take a total of 9-10 years to be a fully registered doctor, and an additional 3-6 years to become a specialist in Malaysia.

The first step for students after SPM or IGCSE/O-Levels is to choose the right Pre-University Programme before entering into a Medical Programme or MBBS in Malaysia. STPM is affordable but the seats are very limited and highly competitive to enter into the medical degree at public universities or IPTA.

The other pathway for students is the private universities. If you don’t plan to go overseas for your medical degree, you may consider the Foundation in Science at the private university offering the Medical Programme. The Foundation in Science is 1 year in duration and cheaper than the external Pre-University programmes.

A popular external Pre-University programme for entry into the MBBS is the A-Levels. The A-Levels is 18 months in duration and will prepare students well to handle the rigours of the medical programme in Malaysia. The entry requirements for the Pre-University programme and Medical degree are higher therefore students need to check whether you qualify for entry.

Upon completion of the Pre-University programme, students need to choose a university with a medical programme that is recognised and accredited by the Malaysian Medical Council (MMC) and MQA.

A 5-year MBBS (Bachelor in Medicine, Bachelor in Surgery) programme that is approved by the Malaysian Medical Council is required in order to qualify for the medical qualifying examination. This exam will help to assess your core knowledge and gauge if you are eligible to practise as a doctor. Passing this exam will enable you to practise medicine in Malaysia after completing the 2-year housemanship and 1-year government service.

In 2015, the government announced that the Ministry of Health will no longer arrange internship placements and that medical graduates are to apply to the government hospitals that offer internship themselves. This may result in a longer wait for internship as there are limited vacancies and an increasing number of medical graduates.

Housemanship is basically the first two years in doctor’s lives upon graduating. As a Houseman, one can earn an average of RM3500 to RM4,400 a month. Upon completing 2 years of housemanship, a houseman would then be promoted to the rank of Medical Officer (MO). New housemen will be placed in the UD43/UD44 bracket. After 3 years of serving as a Medical Officer, they’ll advance to the UD 48 bracket. MOs will then be promoted to UD47/UD48 following another 4 years of service, and UD52 after 3 more years. Additionally, one can move into private practice as an MO, which may pay more.

Upon completing a year as a Medical Officer, you can continue on to specialise which can take you 3-6 years depending on which discipline.

How to Become a Specialist Medical Doctor in Malaysia?

In order to be a registered medical specialist in Malaysia, 4-5 years of postgraduate study is needed in addition to 2-4 years supervised training as a specialist.

Some specialisation choices are

  • Cardiology (heart)
  • Pulmonology (lungs)
  • General surgery
  • Neurology (brain)
  • Dermatology (skin)
  • Orthopaedics
  • Gynaecology

Pathway to Become a Doctor in Malaysia after SPM or IGCSE/O-Levels

Students interested to become Doctors in Malaysia must pursue a medical degree programme that is listed in the Second Schedule Medical Act 1971 as one of the registrable medical qualifications for medical practise in Malaysia. Graduates can then register with the Malaysian Medical Council and apply for a compulsory internship at a government hospital, known as housemanship, as well as compulsory service at a government or public university hospital before becoming qualified medical officers. Aspiring doctors can continue their education and training as specialists through postgraduate studies and supervised training.

Step 1 – PRe-University Programme
  • The first step for students after SPM or IGCSE/O-Levels is to take a Science-based Pre-University Programme.
  • Popular Pre-University programmes for students interested in Medicine are the Foundation in Science and the A-Levels.
Step 2 – Recognised Medical Degree
  • When you complete the Pre-University Programme and upon meeting the entry requirements, you can then continue your medical studies at a recognised university in Malaysia.
  • Upon completion of the 5-year medical degree, students need to apply for Provision for Registration with the MMC before they begin their general clinical training.
Step 3 – HOusemanship
  • Next, you will need to apply to undergo Housemanship for 2 years at a Government Hospital as a House Office (HO).
Step 4 – Full Registration with MMC
  • Upon successful completion of your Housemanship, you will then apply for full registration with the MMC.
Step 5 – Compulsory Service
  • Then, you will undergo a 2-year compulsory service at a government or public university hospital as a Medical Officer (MO).

Where to Study Medicine in Malaysia?

  1. Monash University Malaysia
  2. IMU
  3. MAHSA University
  4. Manipal University
  5. Taylor’s University
  6. UCSI University

What are the Entry Requirements for the Foundation in Science Leading to Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) programme in Malaysia

  • Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM)*
    Pass with min. 5Bs each in Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics / Additional Mathematics and another subject with a pass in History. Malaysian students are required to attain a credit in Bahasa Melayu and English
  • IGCSE/O-Levels
    Pass with min. 5Bs each in Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics / Additional Mathematics and another subject
  • Unified Examination Certificated (UEC)
    Pass with min. B4 in Biology, Chemistry, Physics / Mathematics / Advanced Mathematics
  • Other Qualifications
    Students with other qualifications will be considered on a case-by-case basis***For pre-employment requirement, refer to “NOTE”

What are the Entry Requirements for the Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) programme in Malaysia

  • Private University Foundation in Science (FIS)
    Pass with min. CGPA 3.00 in Biology, Chemistry, Physics / Mathematics
  • Diploma in Health Sciences
    Min. CGPA 3.50 with at least 2Bs each in Biology / Chemistry / Physics and 3 credits each in English, Mathematics / Advanced Mathematics and another subject at SPM or its equivalent
  • Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM)
    Min. BBB / ABC / AAC in Biology, Chemistry and Physics / Mathematics
  • Unified Examination Certificate (UEC)
    Pass with min. B4 in Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics and Advanced Mathematics
  • A Levels
    Min. BBB / ABC / AAC in Biology, Chemistry and Physics / Mathematics
  • South Australian Matriculation (SAM)/SACE International / The Australian Matriculation (AUSMAT)
    Min. ATAR 80 and above including Biology, Chemistry and Physics / Mathematics or aggregate / average of B in Biology, Chemistry and Physics / Mathematics
  • Monash University Foundation Year (MUFY) / Canadian Pre-University (CPU) / Canadian International Matriculation Programme / Canadian Grade 12 / 13 / Ontario Secondary School Diploma Grade 12
    Min. average of 80% and above in 6 subjects with 80% in Biology, Chemistry, Physics / Mathematics
  • International Baccalaureate (IB)
    Min. 30 points including 2 science subjects / Mathematics at Higher Level (HL) and 1 science subject at Standard Level (SL) with a min. 4 points each in Biology, Chemistry and Physics / Mathematics
  • Matriculation in Science (by Ministry of Education Malaysia)
    Pass with CGPA 3.00 and above in Biology, Chemistry and Physics / Mathematics and student must meet prerequisite
  • Other Qualifications**
    Students with other qualifications will be considered on a case-by-case basis***For pre-employment requirement, refer to “NOTE”
A high level of academic attainment is expected.
  1. An understanding of science, in particular chemistry and biology, is central to the understanding of Medicine. However, the Council recognizes the diversity of subjects taken by applicants and the contributions of those who entered medical schools with other qualifications.
  2. All applicants shall have attained a level of competence in English to enable them to complete the course successfully.
  3. All applicants entering the medical programme via matriculation, foundation or pre-medical programme, except those with a degree qualification, STPM or A-level shall have passed and attained a minimum of the following at School Certificate level or its equivalent:
Examinations Requirements

Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia {5PM) 5 Bs each in

  • Biology and
  • Chemistry and
  • Physics and
  • Mathematics or Additional Mathematics and
  • another subject

General Certificate of Education 5 Bs each in Ordinary (“O”) levels

  • Biology and
  • Chemistry and
  • Physics and
  • Mathematics or Additional Mathematics and
  • another subject
Note:

i. Any applicants with School Certificates that is not mentioned in this guideline must refer to ‘The List of Entry Qualifications for International Students’ by Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) for the purpose of qualification equivalency;
ii. Combination of SPM and O-Level results is allowed to fulfill the entry requirement as stated in Keputusan Mesyuarat Jawatankuasa lnduk MQA-SPIPTS Bil.1/2009 bertarikh 11 Mei 2009 dan Keputusan Mesyuarat MQA Bil.4/2009 bertarikh 27 Mei 2009 (Kompilasi Dasar Jaminan Kualiti Pendidikan Tinggi {2009 –
2020: Edisi Ketiga) (Pindaan 2).

Unified Examination Certificate (UEC)

All applicants with a Unified Examination Certificate (UEC) who enter a matriculation/ foundation/ pre-medical programme or medical programme, shall have passed and attained a minimum of:

Programme Requirements

Entry to matriculation, foundation or pre-medical programme

B4 each in 3 subjects:

  • Biology; and
  • Chemistry; and
  • Physics or Mathematics or Advanced Mathematics

Entry to medical programme B4 each in 5 subjects:

  • Biology; and
  • Chemistry; and
  • Physics; and
  • Mathematics; and
  • Advanced Mathematics

Note:

UEC eligibility is only for admission to higher education programs in Private Higher Education Institutions (IPTS) as stated in:

Surat Pekeliling Ketua Pendaftar lnstitusi Pengajian Tinggi Swasta, Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia Bil. 2/2004 – Kelayakan dan Kedudukan ‘Unified Examination Certificate’ (UEC) dated 19 Mac 2004 No. Ruj: KP(JPS)5181/01/02/Jld.3(6)

Higher School Certificate level or its equivalent (STPM and A-Level)
Examinations Requirements
Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia

Grades BBB, ABC or AAC or CGPA 3.0 {STPM} (out of 4.0) in 3 subjects i.e.

  • Biology; and
  • Chemistry; and
  • Physics or Mathematics

General Certificate of Education Grades BBB, ABC or AAC in 3 subjects Advanced {“A”} levels i.e.

  • Biology; and
  • Chemistry; and
  • Physics or Mathematics
Note:

Combination of A-Level or STAM and STPM is allowed to fulfill the entry requirement as stated in Keputusan Mesyuarat Jawatankuasa lnduk MQA-SPIPTS Bil.1/2009 bertarikh 11 Mei 2009 dan Keputusan Mesyuarat MQA Bil.4/2009 bertarikh 27 Mei 2009 (Kompilasi Dasar Jaminan Kualiti Pendidikan Tinggi (2009 –
2020: Edisi Ketiga)

Matriculation, foundation or pre-medical programme or its equivalent

(all applicants must fulfill the requirement at SPM/ 0- Level or its equivalent)

Matriculation or Foundation in Science or Pre- Medical programme

CGPA 3.0 (out of 4.0) in 3 subjects i.e.

  • Biology; and
  • Chemistry; and
  • Physics or Mathematics

Minimum grade for each subject is C (GP 2.0) and Provided the programme is not less than 1 year and completed in the same institution and fulfill the requirement in C3

Australian Pre-University Programmes
  • Monash University Foundation PreUniversity Program (MUFY)
  • University of New South Wales (UNSW) Foundation
  • Western Australia Curriculum Council
  • Australian Universities Foundation Programmes
  • South Australian Matriculation {SAM) or SACEi
  • Australia Year 12
  • Australian Matriculation (Ausmat

Aggregate or the equivalent of Bin 3 subjects i.e.

  • Biology; and
  • Chemistry; and
  • Physics or Mathematics

or

80% ATAR provided the subjects include

  • Biology
  • Chemistry; and
  • Physics or Mathematics
Canadian Pre-University Programmes
  • Canadian Pre-University (CPU)
  • Canadian International Matriculation Program (CIMP / Canadian Grade 12/13
  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma Grade12

Average of 80% in 3 subjects i.e.

  • Biology; and
  • Chemistry; and
  • Physics or Mathematics
Diploma International Baccalaureate (IB) Programme

Minimum overall score 33 points, 2 science subjects (Biology and Chemistry) at Higher Level (HL) and Mathematics at HL and attained a minimum score of 5 each in

  • Biology; and
  • Chemistry; and
  • Mathematics
Diploma Entry Requirements into Medical Degree in Malaysia

Diploma in Health CGPA 3.5 (out of 4.0) Sciences or equivalent and Provided the programme is not less than 5 semesters or 2 1/2 years and completed in the same institution and

At SPM/ 0- Level or its equivalent: Minimum 2 Bs in any 2 subjects

  • Biology; and/or
  • Chemistry; and/or
  • Physics

and Credit in 3 subjects

  • English; and
  • Mathematics or Additional Mathematics;

and

  • another subject

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