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Difference between Studying MBBS program in Russia vs China for Indian Students

Difference between Studying MBBS program in Russia vs China for Indian Students

Well, there is no denying that studying MBBS abroad is always a great and best decision amongst aspiring Indian medical students. There are endless reasons which Indian medical students choose to study MBBS abroad, and one of the major reasons is the limited amount of MBBS seats in Indian government medical colleges and the lakhs of students appearing for NEET (National Eligibility cum Entrance Examination). Well, studying MBBS in India from a private medical college is also an option for Indian medical students, but the high donation and too much expensive MBBS fees, allow students to choose the option to study MBBS abroad.

As many Indian medical students ponder upon several countries to study MBBS abroad and attain a globally accepted MBBS degree so that they can practice MBBS in India. There are various other questions that pop in when an Indian medical student chose the option to study MBBS abroad, and one of the important questions is which country is the best to study MBBS abroad. As there are various countries all around the world that have NMC (National Medical Commission), formerly MCI (Medical Council of India) recognized medical universities, and WDOMS (World Directory of Medical Schools) medical universities and everything.

While Russia is the most desired and most favorable destination to study MBBS abroad, these days, China is also becoming a popular destination for Indian medical students to study MBBS abroad. There have been various students, asking the question, of whether MBBS program in Russia is a good option or MBBS in China for Indian medical aspirants. So, to help you out, let's discuss this topic and find the answer to which country is best to study MBBS abroad, especially for Indian medical students based on various criteria-

Duration of MBBS Program

The duration to complete MBBS program in Russia and MBBS in China is somewhat the same i.e 6 years. Whether you choose to study MBBS program in Russia or MBBS in China, it is going to take 6 years to get it completed. The complete MBBS course is divided into 5+1 years, where 5 years is the classroom training to have solid medical knowledge and 1 year is the extensive training in the affiliated university hospital. This 1-year training is offered to the enrolled medical students to strengthen their clinical skills amongst the students. However, studying MBBS program in Russia, all enrolled medical students get the chance to start their observer ship studies from the second year onwards. Well, now Indian medical students who have chosen to study MBBS program in Russia can also do their internship at Max Hospital during their semester breaks.

The Expense of studying MBBS program in Russia and MBBS in China

If we talk about MBBS in China, studying MBBS in China usually costs around INR 25 Lakhs to 30 Lakhs, whereas, MBBS program in Russia generally costs around INR 22 Lakhs to 30 Lakhs. Certainly, MBBS program in Russia is a more feasible option when it comes to affordability, especially for Indian medical students. All enrolled Indian medical students can study in top government medical universities offering MBBS program in Russia at a cost way lower than that of any private medical university offering MBBS in India. In comparison to the MBBS fees in China, as well, as medical education in Russia, studying MBBS program in Russia is more affordable in terms of fees as well as the overall cost of living. Therefore, if we look at the monetary terms, then MBBS program in Russia is indeed the best option.

Safety and Security While Studying MBBS program in Russia & MBBS in China

No matter which country you choose to study MBBS abroad, whether you are choosing to study MBBS program in Russia or MBBS in China, both countries can be considered safe for all international students, especially Indian medical students. In both countries, there are thousands of Indian students studying MBBS in their medical universities joining as well as graduating every year. If we talk about China, then China has the third-highest number of international students intake every year who chose to study MBBS in China, whereas, Russia stands as a top choice in the entire European continent among international students for their higher studies, especially for MBBS abroad.

Quality of Education offered by Russia and China during the MBBS program

Both Russia and China, the two famous countries offering MBBS abroad offer a very distinct curricular structure as well as teaching styles. Medical universities offering MBBS program in Russia follow a European approach to education whereas, medical universities offering MBBS in China have their own style. Though both the countries offering MBBS abroad practice unique curricular practices, MBBS from Russian medical universities is much more well recognized and accepted in comparison to MBBS from China.

Accreditation & Recognition of MBBS Degree in Russia and China

Both the countries have several medical universities that are globally known for offering MBBS program in Russia and MBBS in China, well reputed and well recognized by all the major medical councils of the world. At present, China has 49 medical universities whereas Russia has as many as 54 medical universities recognized by the Medical Council of India (MCI) and now National Medical Commission (NMC), and WDMOS (World Directory of Medical Schools) accredited.

Languages Used by Medical Universities of Russia and China to Teach MBBS

Well, all know that both, China and Russia, are not of English-speaking origin. Therefore, it is impossible not to learn their local languages, especially for Indian medical students who choose either of the countries to study MBBS abroad. Even if you choose to study in complete English medium universities, in order to enjoy the country, you will knowingly or unknowingly learn their languages, no matter whether you are studying MBBS program in Russia or MBBS in China. However, the number of medical universities in China offering English medium education is considerably less in comparison to Russian medical universities.

Indian medical students who choose to study MBBS program in Russia, are provided the option to choose to study in a complete English medium Russian medical university, would be taught Russian, to help them communicate with the locals during their clinical rotations. However, the language of the classroom and assessment would be English. One cannot overlook the fact that learning both the local languages while studying in Russia or MBBS can provide a lot of scope in terms of career and growth to the students.

Diplomatic Relations with India

Another important point that Indian medical students should need to consider before they choose to study MBBS program in Russia or MBBS in China is how the country of their choice has relations with India. As of the current situation and the sudden break of the pandemic, China has closed its borders to all the international students. China and India both have strained relations for more than issues with each other. Therefore, many students who got themselves enrolled in the medical universities in China to study MBBS in China are seeking transfer to other countries, in order to pursue their MBBS studies.

Whereas Russia, on the other hand, has been a close ally to India for several decades, the strong diplomatic relations between them help the students in adjusting well to Russian culture during their students. As a result, between 2019-and 2021, about 3000+ Indian medical students have joined medical universities in Russia to study MBBS program in Russia even when the world was suffering due to pandemics.


It is evident that the major and the most important difference lies in their diplomatic relations with the countries with India when it comes to choosing the option to study MBBS program in Russia or MBBS in China.

There is no denying that China had been ranked as the 3rd highest choice among the international students for their higher studies in the year 2019, especially for MBBS. Unfortunately, with the sudden emergence and spike in the covid cases, China had closed its borders to the rest of the world for a while, clearly affecting the studies of the international students enrolled in the medical universities in China. Even at present, China has very restricted guidelines for the immigration of international students and that too is only for a few countries. From an Indian perspective, India and China have a history of border disputes, but it has become more stressful in the past few years during too many other concerns. Instead of offline classes, medical universities offering MBBS in China for the time provide online classes, but the NMC (National Medical Commission) has clearly issued guidelines that would not consider medical education in an online mode. Therefore, even if overlooking the border dispute, studying MBBS in China may not be an ideal destination when it comes to studying MBBS abroad if you want to return and work in India.

Whereas, Russia, on the other hand, has been a close ally of India even since its Soviet days. Russia has been a time-tested partner for India and has supported it over the international stage on multiple issues and has been a great friend to India. Both countries are well aware of each other’s culture and appreciate it and thus always welcome international students with open arms. Therefore, the chances of Indian medical students being comfortable among Russian locals are quite high. Russian medical universities often provide a cultural celebration for Indian students at their campuses which makes Indian students feel more at home while being away from home. The healthy relations between both the countries make traveling to Russia and even staying in Russia quite easy during the 6 years of the MBBS program.

On analyzing all these points, it is very much clear that MBBS program in Russia is always the best and the safest choice for Indian medical students who desire to study MBBS abroad this year or even in the coming years. The MBBS course structure, duration of the MBBS program, and quality of MBBS education departed the medical universities of both countries are quite similar. Even the fees and cost of living in these countries for Indian students are almost in a similar bracket, with MBBS program in Russia being the lowest and MBBS in China not far behind.

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