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Flag of Republic Tatarstan
Kazan State medical University
Tatarstan location.gif
Participating cities (LC's) Kazan, Naberezhnye Chelny
Languages Russian, English
Currency (how much is a Big Mac?) Russian Ruble, one Big Mac = 50 rubles
Time zone GMT+3, Moscow zone
Number of Doctors and beds per 10000 people 42 Doctors per 10 000 people, 10 beds
Member of IFMSA since... 1995
Number of incoming students per year 30
Who are our NEO's Aynaz Nigmatzyanova (NEO-Out) and Julia Akchurina (NEO-In)
Our official website / Forum / Facebook group,,
Welcome to Tatarstan!

Welcome Note

WELCOME TO TATARSTAN!!! Choosing Kazan for your clerkship is a great opportunity not only to get acquainted with unique Russian medicine, but also to meet interesting openhearted people, to visit beautiful places, to experience the unforgettable Russian winter, to enjoy our wonderful nature and of course to explore one of the most paradoxical countries in the world with a rich history. You will not remain indifferent, that is for sure. We promise, you will remember your time in RUSSIA forever!


Republic of Tatarstan is a Federal subject of the Russian Federation.

Coat of Arms

The Сapital – Kazan city, located 800 km (500 mi) to the east from Moscow

Founded - May 27, 1920

Political status - Republic

Federal District - Volga

Economic region - Volga

Area - 68,000 km² (26,254.9 sq mi)

Population - 3,786,488 inhabitants (2010 Census)

Official languages - Russian, Tatar

President - Rustam Minnikhanov

Official website

Our Health Care system

Tatarstan's medical school has a high standard of health service, top-quality medical technology, and it is known for it's traditions and such famous names of Health Care Workers as Vishnevski, Bekhterev, Samoylov, Fuchs and many other. It is also famous for the achievements in medical clinical and basic science research.

The Ministry of Health Care is responsible for development of health policy, operation of the nation's public health service and management of the governmental health care budget. The government also owns and operates many of the nation's large hospitals.

A lot of our physicians speak good English.

The care system in Russia has undergone changes and reforms since the break-up of the Soviet Union. However, we are yet to return to the level of general health in the population as during the Soviet era. Currently, healthcare is provided to the population through either public (government sponsored) or private (at personal expense or by commercial insurance) healthcare institutions. Depending on the region, 80-90% of healthcare is provided through the public health sector, which is free of charge for every citizen of the Russian Federation. The remaining 10-20% of healthcare is provided in private practices, which in most cases provide good quality healthcare, however far too expensive for the general public.

There are approximately 710,000 trained and licensed physicians in the Russian Federation, a ratio of 50 doctors per 10,000 inhabitants or 1 doctor per 200 persons. In general, the public sector of healthcare is provided to the population through two main types of healthcare institutions:

• Polyclinics – outpatient clinics, where patients are seen primarily by general practitioners, screened, diagnosed and treated. If needed, the patients can be referred for treatment to specialized hospitals.

• Hospitals, Dispensaries, Specialized Centers – institutions where inpatient care is provided in highly specialized departments.

The Hospitals

There is a large number of medical centers and hospitals in Tatarstan. You will get a chance to get acquainted with one of the best and most advanced hospitals throughout the Republic that cooperates with the exchange program. To find out more about specific hospitals please see the pages of our cities.

Do not worry - you will be picked up and accompanied to your hospital by your contact persons on the first day of your clerkship for sure!!!

Interregional Clinical Diagnostic Center, Kazan

Medical education

The higher educational system in Russia has been based on a European (mainly German) model. After high school, students do not go to college; instead they enter a university and study there for 5 or 6 years. However the higher education system in Russia is currently undergoing significant reform, and there are plans to establish a “bachelor’s” and “master’s” degree system.

The first institution of higher education was established in Kazan in 1804 and was named Kazan Imperial University. Many university "faculties" known as "schools" in the US were established at Kazan Imperial University, including the Medical Faculty. Over time many of the faculties separated from the university and became smaller independent and specialized universities.

During the Soviet era Kazan Imperial University was renamed to Kazan State University. In 2010, on the basis of its outstanding achievements, it became one of five universities in the Russian Federation to receive the status of a Federal University. Thus, it currently holds the proud name Kazan Federal (Volga region) University.

Medical Education has been offered in Kazan since 1814, when the first Medical Faculty was founded within Kazan Imperial University. It gained independence from Kazan Imperial University in 1930 and became Kazan State Medical Institute. Years later, in 1994 it gained the status of a University, a title that it proudly holds today.

Currently, training of undergraduate students at Kazan State Medical University is carried out by nine faculties, covering all the existing medical specialties in the Russian Federation: General Medical, Pediatric, Dental, Pharmaceutical, Nursing, Social Work, Preventive Medicine, Medical Biochemistry, and Medical Biophysics. The latter two faculties have just been established and licensed last year, having begun student training on the 1st of September 2011. Young medical specialists at Kazan State Medical University are trained to meet the needs of the city of Kazan and also of the whole Republic of Tatarstan, neighboring regions and foreign countries. Postgraduate medical education is also conducted at Kazan State Medical University. KSMU currently also offers training through internships and residency programs in all of the medical and non-medical (pharmacy, dentistry, nursing) specialties, and offers all sort of physician-retraining programs.

Cultural differences

Tatarstan is a National Republic. It is a part of Russian Federation with own autonomy. Tatarstan is a unique place where two cultures, two worlds - East and West - meet. The Republic is famous for being very tolerant to the followers of different religions.

Kazan Kremlin, Spassky Tower, Koul-Sharif Minarets

Accommodation & Boarding

International students, who come for an exchange program, will be accommodated with a host family (mostly often), or live in a students’ dormitory (very seldom) or have an apartment or a room arranged by the University.

Staying with a host family appears to be the best choice for improving language skills. Boarding: We provide students with 1 meal per day. If the meal is not provided at the place of accommodation the student will receive an equivalent amount of pocket money (3500 rubles for 2012-2013 exchange season) to cover the boarding expenses.

In general, boarding and lodging is free on bilateral exchange agreement. Students on unilateral exchanges will be obliged to pay 300 EURO for the exchange, which will cover the accommodation and 1 meal per day.

Social program

Social program is available only during the summer months (July and August). Usually we offer social activities during the weekends – tours around Kazan, trips to interesting historical places, boat trips etc, but we also have some small activities during the whole week. All transportation, entrance fees and other extra costs will be at the student’s expense, but we usually provide low cost and even self-organized free activities. There will also be some social activities during the rest of the year, despite the fact that our students are busy with studies. However, we'll do our best to make your exchange in Tatarstan unforgettable. The list of events will be offered to students during the orientation meeting upon arrival, which will be followed by a Welcome party for incoming students, hosted by our organization!!!

Here you can find the social program for August-2011, number of activities and dates (and prices) will be changed, but reading this plan you can imagine how awesome our social program is!

Local & National transportation

Kazan International Airport

There is a direct Lufthansa flight to Kazan from Frankfurt and a direct Turkish airlines flight from Istanbul, however these routes tend to be more expensive than traveling through Moscow due to high convenience with no need of a stop-over in Moscow.

KAZAN INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (KZN) is located about 15-20 kilometers from Kazan. However, there are regular buses (№97), which can transport you from airport to the city.

The trip from Moscow to Kazan can either be made by plane (from Domodedovo or Sheremetevo airports, approximately 1 hour flight) or by train (from Kazanskiy railway station in Moscow). The train trip lasts about 12 hours (usually overnight) but it is equipped in order to provide you with comfortable conditions to sleep overnight and you will already be in Kazan at 7 in the morning next day. The train is very useful and it is considered as a very comfortable way to travel across Russia.

The most convenient train is named “Tatarstan”. (Train tickets Moscow - Kazan - Moscow - 2500 RUR). Flight prices from Moscow to Kazan normally start from 2000 RUR, but usually 3000-5000 RUR (Tatarstan Airlines, S7 Airlines), while train tickets start from 800 - 1200 RUR.

Those who plan to travel to Kazan via Moscow should note that, if their plane or train arrives in Moscow in the morning, it is possible to travel to Kazan on the same day. Otherwise, it will be necessary to stay in Moscow overnight and accommodation arrangements need to made in advance.

THE RAILWAY STATION in Kazan is right in the center of the city, near the Kazan Kremlin and Central Football stadium. Kazan is one of the main stations of the Transsiberian Railway, in a distance of 793 km (approx. 500 mi) east from Moscow.

"Kazan" Railway station

You can travel to different cities of Russia, such as Moscow and St.Peterburg from Kazan for sure. To book the tickets in advance (as recommended) you should visit Russian Railways page and search for available times and price ranges.

Purchase Kazan Train Tickets On Your Own - on Russian Railways web-site or ask your contact person to help you.

Kazan City Transport

TRANSPORTATION IN KAZAN There are municipal tramways, trolleybuses and red buses (more used).

NB! You can get acquainted with the routes of Kazan bus transportation through our Kazan Buses Map (It is in Russian only, but in fact it is not that difficult to understand).

A single-line Kazan Subway, the north-southeast Central Line, opened on the 27 of August,2005. The Kazan Subway now has only seven stations, but it is to be extended in the future.


There is a great amount of different private taxi companies in Kazan. It is easy to find many of these taxi companies on the Internet.


Make sure that you take warm winter clothes if you are going to stay between November and April. The swimming season starts in May or in early June. In September you will get a chance to enjoy a marvelous “golden autumn”. Our climate is moderate-continental, with occasional draughts. The average temperature is -13°C during the coldest month of the year (January) and +19°C during the warmest month (July). Average annual precipitation is 460-520 mm. Vegetation period lasts about 170 days.

Russian Winter
City beach Kazan

Invitation letter, visa, passport registration etc - READ CAREFULLY!!!

Please visit our EC-page before coming for an exchange.

Students from all countries need visas to enter Russia. In order to obtain an entrance visa to the Russian Federation students will have to apply to the Russian embassy in their country of residence. Invitation letters for students will be issued by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation. In order to to process an Invitation Letter for you it is very important for us to have a COPY OF YOUR CURRENT PASSPORT which meets all the requirements stated above. The TIME required to issue the INVITATION LETTER is approximately 32-36 days. We advise all students to visit the web site of their local Russian Embassy to check the rules and regulations before applying for the visa. REMEMBER: student can only get a Russian visa for the period stated in the Official Invitation Letter. In order to stay longer after the clerkship or arrive earlier on touristic basis you ought to apply for a second (tourist) visa.

Please note that Invitation Letter is not a visa and is not sufficient to enter Russia, you need to have Russian visa in your passport!

We’ll send you your Card of Acceptance (CA) as soon as possible, but please note that the department or project may be changed (you will be notified).

Please don’t forget to send your Card of Confirmation (CC) with the exact date, time and place of your arrival, otherwise you will not be picked up at the train station or at the airport. Please forward the information about your arrival time to your contact person as well. CC must be sent 4 weeks prior to exchange!

Migration Card and Passport Registration

The airline stewardess gives all foreigners a small paper in the plane just before landing in Russia – a Immigration Card. This small piece of paper consists of two parts. One is for arrival, is the other is for departure. You have to fill this form with your personal information such as name, date of birth, passport number, visa number, duration of stay, accommodation, etc. The Immigration Card needs to be presented to the immigration officer at the passport control upon your arrival and departure. If you do not have an Immigration Card, you will not be able to pass the passport control and enter the country!

In the same day or next day after your arrival your contact person will make your registration in Russian Federation. It's obligatory for each foreigner, who stays in Russia more than 3 days. For this purpose you will be asked by contact person to give your passport, immigration card and tickets (to Russia and back, boarding passes as well) - they'll bring it to our University’s international department, where you'll be registered quickly, safely and for free - it lasts 2 days (if you don't want to leave your documents in our office, you can do registration yourself - you'll pay a fee, wait in long queue and leave your passport in the Immigration office of Ministry of Foreign Affairs for 5-7 days). We guarantee the safety of your documents on behalf of our Association and University.

Point of information: if you leave Kazan more than for 3 days - you have to make another registration in hotel (for example if you make tourist trip to Moscow or to Saint-Petersburg).

Please DO NOT buy tickets to Russia before you receive the Card of Acceptance from us!!

The dates of our exchanges are normally from 3rd till 30th of any month. We cannot accept students earlier than the 3rd of each month due to accommodation requirements. If you want to arrive earlier than 3rd of leave later than 30th you have to provide accomodation by yourselves.

In case you are planning to purchase your plane tickets in the near future, please be advised that you will not be allowed to stay in the Russian Federation beyond the dates stated in your visa (Federal Law). You have to arrive to Kazan on the 3rd (or 1-2 days later) and leave Russian Federation on the 30th (or 1-2 days earlier) of the corresponding month, no later. This is a very strict rule!

Don't forget to bring with you to Tatarstan!

Keep in mind that every student coming to Kazan for clerkship has to have:

1) white coat

2) surgical costume (scrubs)

3) clean shoes for clinic

4) stethoscope

5) bedclothes

6) enough money – no less than 300 euro for one months (in consideration of fact that you will have one meal per day provided by your contact person). Kazan is not a very cheap city!;)))

General Precautions

Language barrier.

We recommend you to try to learn the basics of the Cyrillic alphabet to be able to understand and read the signs on the streets! Some of the young people might speak English or even some German, however the majority of the people in supermarkets, shops, post-offices, train-stations, police etc. will not understand much in English. On the other hand, plenty of Russian words are really easy to understand, if you are able to read Cyrillic (e.g. PECTOPAH does not make sense the first time you look at it, but when you read it out loud you will find out it is the word for Restaurant, this applies for Cafes and pizzerias as well). Platzkartni is another example of a German word used in Russian and there are many other words for penalty in Russia is "Schtraf" similar to the German word Strafe with exactly the same meaning.

Street food is not safe to eat!

Mostly available around the train station, it consists mainly of Russian hot dogs and stale pastries stuffed with miscellaneous blandness. The prices are too low to be true and there's a certain reason for that. Other areas such as market-places and the Baumana street (main pedestrian street of Kazan) area offers very overpriced shashlik (barbeque).

The Road Traffic.

The road traffic in Russia might be quite dangerous both for drivers and pedestrians. The reason for this is mass ignorance of road regulations by Russian drivers, who very seldom let pedestrians pass on the zebra crossings, always exceed speed limits and rarely look in rear-view mirrors when they are going to change a traffic lane (this is of course an exaggeration, but should give you the general sense of road conditions). Crossing the street at inappropriate places is not safe for pedestrians! On the other hand, pedestrians appear as a danger for drivers themselves. They cross roads where it is prohibited, run out in front of a driving car. We suggest you to be very attentive on Kazan roads even if you follow all the traffic regulations.


Any questions? Contact us by e-mail!

External links

Wikipedia: Kazan, Republic of Tatarstan

Official website of the Republic of Tatarstan (eng, rus, Tatar)

Kazan's official millennium server

The City of Kazan: Official web-portal of Kazan

My Kazan: Information & entertainment portal for Kazan

Official Site for the Kazan Kremlin State Historical and Architectural Museum-Park

Catalog of Kazan internet resources

Information portal for Kazan

Kazan Public Transportation Portal

Kazan Metro: Metro transport in Kazan, Republic of Tatarstan

City of Kazan and Kazan inhabitants

Information for residents and guests of the capital of Tatarstan

News, work, weather and announcements in Kazan

Kazan State Medical University

Kazan State University



Cities offered for exchange


Naberezhny Chelny