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Why study at a medical college in Switzerland?

Switzerland offers an amazing quality of life, top medical schools and high salaries for doctors. However, admission to medical colleges in Switzerland are extremely competitive for Swiss nationals, and even more so for international students. In fact, many colleges are not allowed to recruit non-Swiss nationals.
Courses follow the French model of medical education, with a high exam failure rate after the first year of study.
As a trilingual country, it’s important that you are aware of the language of study of your medical program. Fluency in the language is compulsory.

What medical programs are offered in Switzerland?

If you are able to study a medicine in Switzerland, you should be aware of the range of options open to you. Students in Switzerland start out with general medical sciences such as anatomy and biology before moving on to preclinical studies and then a specialisation.

You should expect a medical program in Switzerland to take between 5-7 years to complete, depending on where you choose to study and the type of medical program you choose.

Immigration and visas in Switzerland

Although not a member of the EU, Switzerland does allow EU citizens to attend university in the country. Students from the EU studying at a medical college in Switzerland must register with the Residents’ Registration Office at their relevant authority within 14 days of arriving, and will also need to show:
  • A valid passport
  • Proof of a place at a registered university
  • Evidence of funds to support themselves
  • Proof of address
  • Health insurance
Non-EU students will need to check the relevant details for studying at a medical college in Switzerland with their own country.

What are the costs of studying at a medical college in Switzerland?

Tuition fees in Switzerland are relatively cheap when compared to the rest of Europe. There is also little difference between tuition fee costs for Swiss students and international students, which is unusual in most of Europe.

As a guide, you should expect to pay around CHF4,000-8,000 (£2,630 – 5,250) per year for your medical program.

Working in Switzerland

Switzerland has one of Europe’s most stable and prosperous economies and is well known for its wealth. Indeed, it was ranked the wealthiest country in the world in 2011 in per capita terms.

Its economy is founded on manufacturing, particularly in chemicals, health and pharmaceuticals. It also has a highly developed services sector, with banking and insurance being a particularly important industry and one the country specialises in.

Switzerland has relatively low taxes for such a well developed country, making it a haven for multinational companies. Medical graduates looking for a career in Switzerland can expect excellent salaries and a high quality of life.   

What to do next

If you would like more information on choosing and applying for to a medical college in Switzerland, sign up to our Free Application Service. We’ll get in touch with you with information tailored to your requirements, including advice on the best medical program for you.