Residency in Family Medicine
The Family Medicine Residency Program is a three-year full-time program, aimed at training family physicians. This Program offers education in accordance with the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) core competencies.

Continuity of comprehensive care for the diverse patient population family physicians serve is foundational to the speciality. Access, accountability, effectiveness and efficiency are essential elements of the discipline. The coordination of patient care and leadership of advanced primary care practices and evolving health care systems are additional vital roles for family physicians.

General information

Campus: Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, NUSOM building, hospitals

Language: English, Kazakh, Russian

Delivery mode: Full time

Duration: 3 years

Career: Residency graduates continue working as physicians.

In correspondence to the 40th Anniversary of the Alma-Ata Declaration, after the WHO Global Conference in Primary Care held in October 2018 in Astana, representatives of governments declared:’ We are convinced that strengthening primary health care (PHC) is the most inclusive, effective and efficient approach to enhance people’s physical and mental health, as well as social well-being and that PHC is a cornerstone of a sustainable health system for universal health coverage (UHC) and health-related Sustainable Development.

Program aims:

The aims of the Nazarbayev University School of Medicine’s Family Medicine Residency are to:

  1. Train residents to become excellent family physicians who care for the Kazakhstani community, especially the underserved populations;
  2. Provide training in behavioural medicine and family dynamics to foster the physician’s awareness of the importance of the family unit in treating the patient;
  3. Provide physicians training experiences in outpatient care effectively and appropriately according to Evidence-based Medicine and updated international standards;
  4. Provide residents with basic skills necessary to implement preventive care and to consistently educate patients about health and wellness, supporting health advocacy and patient education in Kazakhstan;
  5. Support appropriate training in mental health, women's health, palliative medicine, communicable and communicable diseases fostering community health with broader competencies

How to apply

STEP 1. Create your personal account

Register on portal to create a Personal Account. Read the instructions about the application procedure given in your Personal account.

STEP 2. Complete your Application Form and attach the required documents

Fill out the application form and attach the required documents:

  1. Scanned copy of a National ID card or passport;
  2. Scanned copy of secondary school or higher education institution certificate (attestat/diploma) with final academic performance or certificate from the school (spravka) according to the sample in the personal account;
  3. Motivation letter in English;
  4. Valid copies of certificates. The results of standardized tests must be sent directly to the University through test administrators.

STEP 3. Pay an application fee

The application fee is paid online via your personal account with a bank card.

The amount to pay is 5 000 tenge. All application fees are non-refundable.

Step 4. Finish the registration process

Finish the registration process by pressing the “Submit application” button. After submission applicants can’t change their applications.

Step 5. Upload IELTS/TOEFL certificates

Upload IELTS/TOEFL certificates in your personal account in the section "Upload IELTS/TOEFL" and fill up the required information about the certificate.

Further steps

Check your e-mail for notifications from the NU Admissions Department and your personal account to learn about your application status.

If you experience any difficulties with the registration or online application, please contact Refer to your IIN and/or Applicant ID while sending us your requests.

Entry requirements

Applicants applying to the Program for unconditional admission are expected to have:
  • MD or an equivalent terminal medical degree (highest level medical qualification which provides the eligibility to obtain registration or certification to practice as an independent practitioner in the country), obtained in a recognized university according to the World Directory of Medical Schools. During the application period, final year students may submit official current transcripts for consideration. Applicants recommended for admission must provide final transcript and diploma before the end of the Program’s enrollment term. Graduates of the University are enrolled based on the evidence of the final transcript confirming the degree completion followed by diploma submission within a month;
  • An overall IELTS test score of 7.0 or higher (with no sub-score less than 6.0 in each section), or the equivalent TOEFL score as posted on the ETS website;
  • IFOM Basic Science Exam (BSE) or USMLE Step1 test report;
  • high level of motivation and a strong interest in the Program outlined in the personal statement;
  • 2 (two) confidential letters of recommendation.

The relevance of the academic and experiential background and the equivalency and appropriateness of earlier degrees will be determined by the Admissions Committee.

Applicants to the Program, at the discretion of the Admissions Committee, can be exempted from submitting the language proficiency test report if:
  • MD or equivalent terminal medical degree was earned in a country with English as the language of official communication, academic instruction and daily life;
  • MD or equivalent terminal medical degree was earned in a program which was officially taught in English;
  • the applicant is a graduate of Nazarbayev University.

List of documents to be submitted by the applicants

  • Complete application form;
  • National ID or passport;
  • Official document confirming name change (if applicable);
  • MD or equivalent terminal medical diploma with transcript;
  • IELTS or TOEFL test report/certificate valid as of the date of online documents submission to the Programs (if applicable);
  • IFOM Basic Science Exam (BSE) or USMLE step 1 test report;
  • Two confidential letters of recommendation written within the last 12 months from academic or clinical referees preferably related to the specific residency program (to be provided by referees electronically or in hard copy) ;
  • Personal statement (up to 500 words);
  • 075у medical certificate (for Kazakhstani candidates) or a similar medical certificate with indication of general health or other documents as requested by the University (for international candidates);
  • The document stating the presence or absence of a criminal record.

Important dates

Online application deadline: June 4, 2023 inclusive (23:59 Astana time).

Status assigned to the candidate

All registered candidates can check the status of their application in the Personal account. Description of the status below is presented in the order of assignment to the candidate in the Personal account.

Application in processing. This is interim status, which means that the application is being processed. Admissions Committee will evaluate the application and inform the candidate on further steps/stages. Notification on final results will be sent to your email address.

Does not meet entry requirements. The status is assigned to the candidates who do not meet the minimum entry requirements. It is given after checking the application forms and the documents by the Admissions Department.

Disqualified. The status is assigned to candidates who are disqualified for gross violations of the conditions of the competition. For example, provided deliberately false information.

Rejected by Admissions Committee. At one of the competition stages, the Admissions Committee decided to reject the candidate’s application.

Transfer to another program. At the stage of an application screening the Admissions Committee has decided to recommend the candidate for consideration by the Admissions Committee of another program within the same School.

Pending. Candidate’s application is pending.

Waiting list. The Admissions Committee has finished reviewing the candidate’s application and made a decision to put you on a waiting list. Such candidates should expect notification from the University, as there is a possibility that if other candidates reject to study, they may be sent an invitation letter to study.

Recommended for admission to Zero Year of Graduate programs. The Admissions Committee has decided to recommend the candidate for the Zero Year of Graduate program. “Zero Year of Graduate programs” is a two-semester full-time program for candidates, who do not meet the language requirements for direct admission to Master’s programs, with intensive language, academic and research preparation for Master’s programs.

Recommended for admission to program. Admissions Committee has decided to recommend candidate for the program without going through the Zero Year of Graduate programs.

Recommended for conditional admission. The Admissions Committee has decided to recommend a candidate for the conditional admission with a requirement to fulfill the condition by the deadline specified in the notification.

Withdrawn. Candidate decided to withdraw from the competition.

Accepted Program admission offer. The status is assigned to candidates who received offer letter, signed Enrollment confirmation form and fulfilled all the сonditions of the University indicated in the offer letter.

Accepted Zero Year of Graduate programs admission offer. The status is assigned to candidates who received offer letter to Zero Year of Graduate program, signed Enrollment confirmation form and fulfilled all the сonditions of the University indicated in the offer letter.

Refused admission offer. The candidate was recommended for admission, but refused to study.

Refused in favor of another NU program. The status is applicable for those candidates, who applied for several graduate programs at NU. The status is assigned when the candidate chooses another program.

Deferred. The status is assigned to candidates who were accepted for the program, but decided to postpone their studies until the next year.

Did not submit the documents/Refused. The status assigned to candidates who did not provide originals of the documents by the stated deadline, which means that the candidate refuses to study at University.

Did not come to Orientation week/Refused. The status is assigned to candidates who accepted the offer letter, provided hard copies of documents, but did not participate in Orientation week. The vacant place, if available, can be offered to the candidates in the Waiting list.

Enrolled to program. The status is assigned to candidates who enrolled to the main program by the Decision of the Provost. Candidate officially became a student.

Enrolled to Zero Year of Graduate programs. The status is assigned to candidates who enrolled to the Zero Year of Graduate program by the Decision of the Provost. Candidate officially became a student.


Postgraduate Level (PL) –Year 1

The “Intern” year (1st-year Residents) focuses on the clinical experience with patients affected with acute and chronic illnesses in several inpatient and outpatient departments and primary care centres, with appropriate supervision from UMC Attending Physicians and/or NUSOM Faculty.

The residents will pass through a series of 4-week rotations at inpatient and outpatient departments,

Postgraduate Level (PL) - Year 2

The second year will be devoted to acquiring additional clinical skills, developing more independence, and gaining more experience in leadership and supervision.

Supervisory roles will be provided on inpatient and outpatient services, in both general and subspecialty medical and surgical teams. New skill sets will be developed also in the Medical Centre for Mental Health Problems (MCMHP), located in Astana’s hospitals outside the UMC. The remaining part of the year will consist of further subspecialties rotations, including outpatient clinics and longitudinal clinic experiences, as a foundation for family medicine practice.

Moreover, the Residents will be encouraged to cultivate and broaden their potential research interests, through mentored and individual quality improvement and NUSOM research projects.

Postgraduate Level (PL) - Year 3

The third year will emphasize supervisory experiences in the inpatient general and subspecialty general medical and surgical teams, as well as in primary care centres. In this regard, part of the year will consist of elective rotations (which allow each Resident to shape own clinical training and to concentrate on areas of interest and career-specific experiences) or will be focused on longitudinal experiences that may continue in primary care settings.

In the former case, substantial research and elective time will be provided to the Residents, in order to explore their specific skills, prepare for their future careers and eventually to enter in specific Academic Programs. In the latter case, also community service opportunities will be available and encouraged, like rotations in either a rural practice or an urban community.

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