Questions and Answers
All the new questions will be in green color.
Q: Is the Department of the Medical and Health Science Programs in charge of health insurance?
A: No, we are in charge of medical and health science students who are sponsored by the Saudi Arabian Cultural Mission. To contact Aetna, SACM’s health insurance company, please contact Mr. Fahad Albawardy at: Fbawardy@sacm.org (571-327-2688) or the Aetna Office at: 571-327-2689, or go to: www.aetnainternational.com/
Q: Who do I contact if I have an administrative or technical complaint?
A: Please contact the following numbers: 571-327-2291, 571-327-6258, 571-327-4969. You can also contact Mr. Nasser Alarfaj at: Narfaj@sacm.org
Q: How can I view the list of universities that are accredited by the Saudi Ministry of Higher Education?
Please contact Ms. Abeer Abdeifatah at: 571-327-2540, or Mr. Tarig Elshiekh at: 571-327-2331 or view the following link: http://www.sacm.org/Departments/Academicacreditation.aspx
Q: I do not have a file at SACM yet, how can I obtain a financial degree for “admission purposes only?"
(This is for doctors applying for residency and fellowship programs).
You must provide our office with the following:
-A copy of a recent financial guarantee from your sponsor in Saudi Arabia.
-Indicate the degree level.
-Indicate the major.
-Indicate the name of the university/hospital.
Q: I would like to obtain a financial guarantee for my university. How do I do this?
A: Please generate a request for a financial guarantee on the student portal and attach your new enrollment letter.
Q: How do I use the student portal?
A: Please visit the following link: http://safeer.mohe.gov.sa/Sites/Student/ScholarshipStudent /Pages/ElectronicServices.aspx
Q: I am interested in clinical rotations and clinical electives. What resources are available?
A: Please visit the following website: http://chicagomedicaltrainingcenter.org/Chicago_Medical_ Training_Center/Elective_Rotations.html
Q: May students register for ESL after taking their GRE examinations?
A: No, because the GRE is an examination that serves for higher ranking placement compared to ESL’s requirements. Hence, trying to enroll into ESL after taking the GRE is considered an academic set back. The maximum time granted to prepare/take the GRE is 6 months; therefore, students must use this period to their greatest advantage in order to pass their GRE’s with scores that will qualify them for placement in universities.
Q: Once a student gets his or her Saudi board exam and takes the USMLE, will the board be accepted in American universities or does the student have to repeat his or her residency in U.S.?
A: Some universities accept Saudi boards, however, the student must be ECFMG certified.
Q: What do I need to do to sit for the American Board?
A: You must sit for USMLE classes in order to take the American board test.
Q: My university has contacted me asking for proof of financial support, what should I do to prove that I receive financial support in order to extend my visa?
A: Contact your advisor at SACM and provide him or her with a copy of your scholarship letter as well as your SACM ID number so that SACM can process the appropriate letter in favor of your request.
Q: Who do I contact in the event that I need statistics regarding the medical field in Saudi Arabia?
A: Contact your advisor.
Q: How long does a support, financial guarantee, or any letter for students takes to process by my advisor at the Department of Medical and Health Science Programs?
A: It takes 48 to 72 hours. In urgent cases, letters may be processed earlier.
Q: I have just completed my undergraduate studies in Saudi Arabia and would like to pursue dental school in the United States. What steps should I take?
A: In order for you to get accepted by any dental school for postgraduate studies you must take the TOEFL and submit a score of no less than 95, and pass the NBDE I. Some specialties may waive the NBDE requirements but the competitive schools and programs require it.
Q: I do not have a Social Security Card and am not a permanent resident, but I would like to be able to work and gain experience in my field. Where do I go?
A: The National Institues of Health (www.nih.gov).
Q) Which universities offer programs in Clinical Pharmacy?
A: Wayne State University (http://wayne.edu/)
Q) What is the different between the DPT degree and PhD degree?
A) The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) is a professional (entry-level) physical therapist degree program in the United States leading to entry-level physical therapist practice. The DPT degree is a graduate degree program that is 3 years in length. All physical therapists who practice in the US must obtain licensure in the state/jurisdiction in which they practice. Physical therapists must meet specific state licensure requirements of continuing competence to maintain current licensure.
The PhD (DSc) is an academic degree that often requires 2-4 years of coursework, followed by the completion of a comprehensive examination. The PhD culminates in the completion of a dissertation that may take 1-2 or more years to complete. The PhD is designed for the individual to demonstrate an advanced body of knowledge and expertise in a focused areas and with a demonstrated ability to conduct original research using sound research methods. Individuals possessing a PhD may have earned a variety of undergraduate and graduate degrees prior to completing this degree.