Frequently Asked Questions

About ISMS

Yes, you can enter the country with a tourist visa but in order to start at the university you must obtain a student visa. In order to do so, you may apply as instructed in the Visa Requirements page.


Our medical programs are designed with the highest standards of any American Medical School and fully approved by all Government agencies in Panama. ISMS has contacted and is in the process of being accredited by different organizations in different countries, including the U.S.

ISMS wll be  listed in the International Medical Education Directory (IMED) ( FAIMER), necessary requirement to be accepted for

USMLE step 1.

Yes. If you are an American citizen and have passed the complete ECFMG-USMLE examination, you will be able to obtain a license in the U.S. If you are not an American citizen and you have passed the complete ECFMG-USMLE examination, this test will give you the opportunity to obtain a medical license in the U.S. and give you the opportunity to obtain a VISA to work in the USA.

The program requires 4 years of medical school. Must have Premedicine prior to enter Medical School Program.


Core Clerkships (3 year - 40 credits)

  • Internal Medicine  (8 weeks)
  • General Surgery   (6 weeks)
  • Pediatrics             (8 weeks)
  • Obtetrics-Gyn       (6 weeks)
  • Family Practice and Primary care (4 weeks)
  • Neurological Sciences (4weeks)
  • Psychiatry            (6 weeks)

Required Clerkships ( Year 3 or 4 - 10 credits)

  • Anesthesia (2 weeks)
  • Radiology (2 weeks)

4 Year Requirements (40 credits )

  • Medicine   II       (4 weeks)
  • Surgery    II       (6 weeks)
  • Pediatrics  II      (4 weeks)
  • Obtetrics-Gyn II (6 weeks)
  • Family Practice and Primary care (6 weeks)
  • Electives preceptorship  (12 weeks)


Highly recommended electives include:          
·         Emergency Medicine
·         Family Medicine
·         Pathology Cardiology
·         Intensive Care Medicine
·         Anesthesiology
·         Urology
·         ENT
·         Dermatology 
·         Radiology
·         Vascular Surgery
          Plastic Surgery
The remaining of electives are selected at each student's discretion based on interest and availability.

All Basic Sciences courses are taught on a quarterly basis. Degrees are conferred in January, May and August. Calendar dates are subject to change at any time by official action of the International School of Medical Sciences.


Yes, ISMS has arranged with several hospitals in the U.S. for its Students to access multiple clinical rotations. If Students have a specific hospital choice they would like to consider, making their own arrangements, ISMS will assist them.

Our Basic Sciences program has three 16-week semesters per year. Break periods during the summer and winter vacations will allow students to travel, work or study for exams. After completing a 2 year period with 16-week trimesters, students pass on to take our 2 year clinical program.

Students are required to APPROVE the USMLE Step I after the Basic Sciences courses, before progressing to the Clinical program.

In order to receive their M.D. degree, students must take and pass the USMLE Step II. This examination may be taken after the 3rd. or 4th year, when core rotations are mostly completed.


1.      For several years, U.S. medical schools have been moving away from solely didactic learning to a curriculum in which hospital clinical experience is incorporated into basic science studies.

2.      A medical program must be at least 32 months in duration in order for international medical school graduates to be eligible for licensure in the various states.

3.      Incorporating Problem-Base Evidence Medicine in the curriculum

4.      Students who attend schools that provide a medical education through distance learning are not eligible for licensure in the U.S.

Student Life

Panama has excellent housing facilities for single or married students. ISMS will assist and support you looking for housing.

Students must complete the entire Basic Sciences program in Panama,  minimum  two years. However, if the student wishes, it is possible to return home during break periods.