Medical Education in Switzerland
In Switzerland medical education is structured in a three-tier model that enables future physicians to acquire both the theoretical and practical bases of the medical profession.
Basic premed training (medicine studies) provides the foundations of the medical profession – a course of studies that results in a federal diploma in medicine and entitles graduates to practice (as interns or residents only) in a hospital or medical clinic setting.
Basic training is followed by a stage of professional development specifically intended to enhance the professional competence of physicians, leading to a specialisation in a particular area. This type of education, lasting 5 or 6 years after graduating in medicine, entails an internship at professional centres recognised by the FMH, like Cardiocentro Ticino. Specialisation centres are structured into 3 levels: A, B, and C. While C and B-level centres offer 1 or 2-year courses depending on the specialty, A-level (University level) professional development centres enable postgraduate students to complete their specialist training, entitling them to practice as independent physicians.
Continuing Medical Education
Although the traditional course of medical studies ends with a specialisation, all physicians must constantly update on the state of the art in their specialty. For this purpose, a number of medical and scientific symposia, courses and congresses are organised in Switzerland, Europe and the rest of the world, enabling physicians to gain a more extensive knowledge in their area of professional interest. Therefore, the updating process starts with the title of specialist and lasts throughout the professional life of a practitioner, until retirement.