Zahra Hasan and team working on COVID-19 and interferon research, Aga Khan University Medical College, Karachi.
Zahra Hasan and team working on COVID-19 and interferon research, Aga Khan University Medical College, Karachi...
The Aga Khan University’s medical Colleges educate world-class health professionals and are internationally renowned for their research. Our graduates and faculty members include include prize-winning scientists and practitioners and members of the US National Academy of Medicine. More than half of all physicians educated at AKU are women.
In Pakistan and East Africa, Medical College faculty and alumni are setting the benchmark for quality of care, training new generations of physicians, developing innovative solutions to public health challenges and providing policymakers with evidence-based recommendations.
In Pakistan, the University offers the MBBS degree (the equivalent of the North American M.D.); 33 residency and 27 fellowship programmes; three master’s degree programmes; and a PhD in health sciences. We offer the country’s only fellowships in a number of specialties.
AKDN / Kohi Marri
Our MBBS curriculum prepares graduates to effectively promote health in challenging contexts, and places special emphasis on primary care and public health. Students spend nearly one-fifth of their time focusing on community health and spend significant time in low-income settlements of Karachi as part of the University’s influential Urban Health Programme.
Many AKU graduates have gone on to study, work and teach at the finest healthcare institutions in the world. Many have also remained in or returned to Pakistan, to which they bring, in the words of one distinguished alumni, “ambitions to set new standards for clinical practice, education and research, and to influence academic medicine, health policy and public health”.
In 2004, AKU began postgraduate medical education in East Africa. We currently offer nine residency programmes, in fields such as paediatrics, obstetrics and gynaecology, family medicine and surgery. The University also offers fellowship training in cardiology and other fields, and plans to launch an undergraduate medical degree programme (Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery) in East Africa as well.
In Afghanistan, we launched postgraduate training in 2012 at the French Medical Institute for Mothers and Children. We now offer programmes in eight disciplines, including cardiovascular surgery. FMIC is the only institution in Afghanistan offering residency training in several fields.
In total, 7,600 women and men have graduated from AKU’s medical programmes.
Medical research at AKU focuses on pressing issues facing low-income countries. Our work has been published in leading journals such as The Lancet and The New England Journal of Medicine. It has spurred government to introduce new vaccines, reduced polio cases in insecure areas and yielded evidence that is informing national and international efforts to improve health among the disadvantaged. Six of Pakistan’s 10 most productive health researchers are AKU faculty members, according to the Pakistan Council for Science and Technology.
The University has launched a number of research centres in recent years, including the Centre for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research, Institute for Global Health and Development, Brain and Mind Institute, Cancer Centre, Centre of Excellence in Trauma and Emergencies, and Centre for Global Surgical Care.