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Housemanship is the starting stage in the professional life of a medical doctor/dentist after their medical school. In this stage, they practice under the supervision of a registered specialist, usually a consultant or a very senior medical doctor.

(See The Mdcn Housemanship Portal Here)

Centralized Housemanship Placement In Nigeria

In the past, various Housemanship centers/Medical Institutions in Nigeria were authoritatively in charge of Housemanship posting and medical graduates of Medicine and Dentistry had to apply for posting in these centers. This came with its epic challenges of trying to secure a Housemanship center. For example, they had too many centers and attended multiple interviews traveling far and wide. This caused a burden on cost in various forms including the application processing fees.

More so, it also came with a delay in induction as the recent graduates had to wait for the existing one to complete their Housemanship training. This was to ensure that there was vacant space for them and that their 1 year period of the internship was available post-induction. With all these challenges of securing a Housemanship placement, corruption/nepotism wasn’t avoided.

As a result of these challenges, there came the need for a centralized Housemanship placement of house officers. It is centralized meaning it’s now controlled by a single body which is the MDCN.

The centralized Housemanship posting is regulated by MDCN independently. This is through their online portal and will be free from individual bias. Hence, the term “central” as the posting is done now solely by the MDCN online Housemanship Portal and not the various health institutions.

Nevertheless, the centralized Housemanship placement doesn’t cover all approved health institutions for house jobs. The teaching hospitals exempted from it are armed or military hospitals, police hospitals, state and FCT hospitals, and privately owned hospitals.

As we continue in this article, you are going to know more about Housemanships for medical doctor/dentist in Nigeria, how to apply through the mdcn login portal and the essence of Housemanship in Nigeria.

What Is The MDCN Housemanship? 

The Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria Housemanship is the first professional practice stage in the career of a Medical Doctor or Dentist in Nigeria.

It is regarded as professional in that it is at this stage they are permitted to practice legally under the supervision of a designated specialist. The medical specialist could be a consultant, a senior registrar, or a senior medical officer.

At this stage, they have just recently obtained their first degree (MBBS/MBChB or BDS) and provisional license from their Medical School and MDCN respectively.

What Is MDCN Provisional License?

The MDCN Provisional License is a license that allows you to only practice professionally under the supervision of a very higher medical personnel.

This is done during housejob and the National Youth Service Corps program. With this provisional license, you can’t practice independently.

How To Get A Provisional Medical License From MDCN?

There are two ways to get a provisional license from MDCN. However, each way depends on if you are schooled here in Nigeria or abroad.

MDCN Provisional License

Way 1

The first way applies to those who are schooled in Nigeria. Firstly, you automatically get a provisional medical license from MDCN if you had your medical education from an accredited medical school in Nigeria.

In other words, once you successfully completed your 6 or 5 years of medical school ( UTME or Direct Entry respectively) and have received your MBBS or BDS degree in Nigeria, you are automatically awarded a provisional license by MDCN. This license is awarded on the day of induction/oath taking ceremony.

Way 2

This way applies to those who school abroad. In this way, if you are schooled abroad, you are required first to write an assessment examination. This is known as the MDCN exam. We have provided you with everything you need to know about the MDCN exam here.

If you pass this examination, you will be offered a provisional medical license in Nigeria. There is also an induction ceremony for doctors/dentists that passed this exam.

The significant purpose of this examination is to assess that your education abroad and medical knowledge from the school abroad is quality enough to allow you to practice in Nigeria.

You are assessed to see if you meet the standard of medical education and practice in Nigeria as you were schooled in a foreign country. This standard in Nigeria is set by the MDCN.

It is similar to the way the GMC or FSMB authorizes the PLAB or USMLE for foreign-trained doctors to have licenses and practice in the UK or US respectively.

What Are The Requirements To Do Housemanship Here In Nigeria?

  1. Have a medical degree recognized on wdoms. If you can’t find your school on wdoms, you should contact the MDCN.
  2. Get a provisional medical license from MDCN.

Eligibility of The Housemanship

To be eligible for the Housemanship, you should have a folio number and a non-expired provisional license.

The provisional license is only valid for 12 months after issuing the license. After that, it expires. That means you should be able to start your Housemanship within 12 months of graduation from medical school.

This provisional registration certificate (provisional license) is issued to graduates on the day of their oath-taking ceremony a.k.a. induction. This applies to both indigenous and foreign-trained doctors.

Expiration of the provisional license means that you will need to take the MDCN examination whether you are a foreign or indigenous trained graduate.

The folio number is obtained from the license or the folio number document assigned to you by MDCN.

House Officer in Nigeria

How To Apply For Housemanship In Nigeria?

Once you have had your provisional license to practice and folio number, you can now apply for the Housemanship on the mdcn housemanship portal.

To apply for Housemanship, you should register on the housemanship portal https://housemanship.mdcn.gov.ng.

You will need to insert your folio number and date of issue of the Provisional Registration Certificate.

Below you will see the purpose of the folio number and the date of issue of the Provisional Registration Certificate.

What Is The Purpose Of The MDCN Folio Number And The Date Of Issue Of Provisional License?

Apart from being a means to easily identify all past and current house officers, the main significance of the folio number is to prevent medical doctors/dentist from doing their housemanship twice after a successful completion of one.

Hence, the folio number will verify if you are fully registered as a member (if you have completed your Housemanship in the past). In this case, if you are, you are not eligible for a house job.

The date of issue of Provisional Registration Certificate verifies if your 1-year license hasn’t expired. If it has expired, you are not eligible for Housemanship and in this case you should contact the MDCN.

Where Are the Housemanship Approved Centres?

Medical Housemanship takes place in approved Housemanship centers in Nigeria. There are more than 40 approved (By The MDCN) Medical institutions including tertiary, secondary, and primary for Housemanship openings each year.

These medical institutions are located in all 36 States including FCT.

Can I Do My Housemanship Abroad?

This depends, it is a Yes, or a No.

As a No,

No, if you want to practice in Nigeria, you can’t do your Housemanship abroad regardless of the country of your medical education.

If you desire to practice in Nigeria, you must do your Housemanship here in Nigeria.

As a Yes,

Yes, you can do your Housemanship abroad if you desire to practice abroad regardless of the country of your medical education.

To do this, you should make sure to obtain the country’s licensing examination first.

Note that in such country, it may not be called housemanship. It may simply be called internship or foundation year 1&2 as in the UK, or Post Graduate Year 1 as in the US.

Above all, we advise that you do your Housemanship here in Nigeria as this allows you to be certified first in your homeland before venturing abroad.

Furthermore, the practice experience from the Housemanship here in Nigeria is your very first professional one. Such experience is useful for subsequent practice and the advancement of your career. In addition to this reason, medical regulatory authorities like the GMC of UK, and the FSB of US requires international medical graduates to have previous clinical practice experience before they practice in their country.

Lastly, the MDCN has stated that one isn’t a medical doctor or a dentist in Nigeria by merely just having the MBBS or BDS degree. The MDCN went further to state that you are a doctor until you are fully registered by the MDCN. And doing your housemanship in Nigeria is part of the steps in obtaining a FULL REGISTRATION status.

How Much Is Housemanship Salary In Nigeria?

As of 2023, the average salary for a house officer in Nigeria is N180k. The salary range is N150k to N244k.

This salary depends on the tier and type hospital where you do your Housemanship.

For example, the salary in federal teaching hospitals is a bit higher than that of some state teaching hospital. More so, some top private hospital could pay higher salaries than none private ones.

How Long Is Housemanship in Nigeria?

The total duration of Housemanship in Nigeria is 12 months. A house officer is expected to have completed all his posting within this period.

The 12-month duration is broken down into an uninterrupted 3 months/12 weeks posting each in 4 departments.

The 4 departments are Internal medicine, Obstetrics & Gynaecology,  Paediatrics, Surgery, and other relevant specialties for dentistry.

What Is Next After Housemanship In Nigeria?

After Housemanship, a medical doctor is expected to apply for a certificate of full registration from MDCN. As they were not initially fully licensed with the provisional one until after completion of their Housemanship.

After obtaining full licensure from MDCN, the medical doctor/dentist could then go for their National Youth Service (NYSC). Otherwise, they may proceed to work as Medical Officers or further their post-graduate studies if they are exempted from the National Youth Service.

This Certification of Full Registration allows the medical doctor or dentist to practice independently.

Houseofficers Guide

Laboratory Reference Ranges in Healthy Adults

The values listed below are generalizations. Each laboratory has specific reference ranges.

Source: Medscape


See the list below:

Ammonia: 15-50 µmol/L

Ceruloplasmin: 15-60 mg/dL

Chloride: 95-105 mmol/L

Copper: 70-150 µg/dL

Creatinine: 0.8-1.3 mg/dL

Blood urea nitrogen: 8-21 mg/dL

Ferritin: 12-300 ng/mL (men), 12-150 ng/mL (women)

Glucose: 65-110 mg/dL

Inorganic phosphorous: 1-1.5 mmol/L

Ionized calcium: 1.03-1.23 mmol/L

Magnesium: 1.5-2 mEq/L

Phosphate: 0.8-1.5 mmol/L

Potassium: 3.5-5 mmol/L

Pyruvate: 300-900 µg/dL

Sodium: 135-145 mmol/L

Total calcium: 2-2.6 mmol/L (8.5-10.2 mg/dL)

Total iron-binding capacity: 45-85 µmol/L

Total serum iron: 65-180 µg/dL (men), 30-170 µg/dL (women)

Transferrin: 200-350 mg/dL

Urea: 1.2-3 mmol/L

Uric acid: 0.18-0.48 mmol/L

Zinc: 70-100 µmol/L


See the list below:

Hemoglobin: 13-17 g/dL (men), 12-15 g/dL (women)

Hematocrit 40%-52% (men), 36%-47%

Glycosylated hemoglobin 4%-6%

Mean corpuscular volume (MCV): 80-100 fL

Red blood cell distribution width (RDW): 11.5%-14.5%

Mean corpuscular hemoglobin (MCH): 0.4-0.5 fmol/cell

Mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC): 30-35 g/dL

Reticulocytes 0.5%-1.5%

White blood cells (WBC) 4-10 x 10^9/L

Neutrophils: 2-8 x 10^9/L

Bands: < 1 x 10^9/L

Lymphocytes: 1-4 x 10^9/L

Monocytes: 0.2-0.8 x 10^9/L

Eosinophils: < 0.5 x 10^9/L

Platelets: 150-400 x 10^9/L

Prothrombin time: 11-14 sec

International normalized ratio (INR): 0.9-1.2

Activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT): 20-40 sec

Fibrinogen: 1.8-4 g/L

Bleeding time: 2-9 min


See the list below:

Triglycerides: 50-150 mg/dL

Total cholesterol: 3-5.5 mmol/L

High-density lipoprotein (HDL): 40-80 mg/dL

Low-density lipoprotein (LDL): 85-125 mg/dL

Acid base

See the list below:

pH: 7.35-7.45

Base excess: (-3)-(+3)

H+: 36-44 nmol/L

Partial pressure of oxygen (pO2): 75-100 mm Hg

Oxygen saturation: 96%-100%

Partial pressure of carbon dioxide (pCO2): 35-45 mm Hg

Bicarbonate (HCO3): 18-22 mmol/L

Gastrointestinal function

See the list below:

Albumin: 35-50 g/L

Alkaline phosphatase: 50-100 U/L

Alanine aminotransferase (ALT): 5-30 U/L

Amylase: 30-125 U/L

Aspartate aminotransferase (AST): 5-30 U/L

Direct bilirubin: 0-6 µmol/L

Gamma glutamyl transferase: 6-50 U/L

Lipase: 10-150 U/L

Total bilirubin: 2-20 µmol/L

Total protein: 60-80 g/L

Cardiac enzymes

See the list below:

Creatine kinase: 25-200 U/L

Creatine kinase MB (CKMB): 0-4 ng/mL

Troponin: 0-0.4 ng/mL


See the list below:

17 hydroxyprogesterone (female, follicular): 0.2-1 mg/L

Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH): 4.5-20 pmol/L

Estradiol: 1.5-5 ng/dL (male), 2-14 ng/dL (female, follicular), 2-16 ng/dL (female, luteal), < 3.5 ng/dL (postmenopausal)

Free T3: 0.2-0.5 ng/dL

Free T4: 10-20 pmol/L

Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH): 1-10 IU/L (male), 1-10 IU/L (female, follicular/luteal), 5-25 IU/L (female, ovulation), 30-110 IU/L (postmenopause)

Growth hormone (fasting) : 0-5 ng/mL

Progesterone: 70-280 (ovulation), ng/dL

Prolactin: < 14 ng/mL

Testosterone (male): 10-25 nmol/L

Thyroxine-binding globulin: 12-30 mg/L

Thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH): 0.5-5 mIU/L

Total T4, adult: 4.9-11.7 mg/dL

Total T3: 0.7-1.5 ng/dL

Free T3: 1.7-3.7 pg/mL


See the list below:

Folate (serum) : 7-36 nmol/L

Vitamin A: 30-65 µg/dL

Vitamin B12: 130-700 ng/L

Vitamin C: 0.4-1.5 mg/dL

Vitamin D: 5-75 ng/mL

Tumor markers

See the list below:

Alpha fetoprotein: 0-44 ng/mL

Beta human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG): < 5 IU/I

CA19.9: < 40 U/mL

Carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA): < 4 ug/L

Prostatic acid phosphatase (PAP): 0-3 U/dL

Prostate-specific antigen (PSA): < 4 ug/L


See the list below:

Alpha 1-antitrypsin: 20-50 µmol/L

Angiotensin-converting enzyme: 23-57 U/L

C-reactive protein: < 5 mg/L

D-dimer: < 500 ng/mL

Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR): Less than age/2 mm/hour

Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH): 50-150 U/L

Lead: < 40 µg/dL

Rheumatoid factor: < 25 IU/ml

Hope you got all you need? Any more questions, kindly state them in the comments box below.

By Dr Bolanle

Bola has contributed to numerous publications, both in print and online, bringing a unique blend of medical accuracy and a talent for storytelling to her work. She has a knack for demystifying medical conditions, treatments, and procedures, empowering readers to know everything about the health structure.

14 thoughts on “All About The MDCN Housemanship In Nigeria”
  1. Hello,
    I am nigerian studying medicine abroad. I signed up for the MD program which includes a year and a half of internship (housemanship). Is this degree acceptable in nigeria or will i be made to repeat the housemanship after passing the examination?

    1. Hi, to answer your first question,

      There’s nothing bad with studying medicine outside of Nigeria neither is the MDCN against that.

      However, due to the fact that it’s not all medical schools that are globally accredited, the MDCN and other medical councils of other countries do not accept medical degrees from medical schools without accreditation.

      To see if the school you are attending is recognized and accredited, you should visit https://wdoms.org/

    2. For your second question,

      if you mean passing the MDCN exam then there will be no point not to do the housemanship in Nigeria. This is because international medical graduates write the MDCN exam to have eligibility to do the Nigerian housemanship.
      So, to answer your question, if you write the mdcn exam, you have to do the housemanship in Nigeria.

      Also, It’s a good thing that your school also do housmanship. However, you should note that the housemanship you do there is independent of the housemanship in Nigeria.

      What this means is that whether you do the housemanship over there or not, you still have to do the housemanship in Nigeria if you intend to practice in Nigeria.

      So ask yourself- do you want to practice in Nigeria? If you want to, then you must do the Nigerian housemanship.

      As a recommendation, I will recommend you to complete your MD program there, do the country’s housemanship there, and also do the Nigerian housemanship.

      The housemanship you do over there will make you eligible to practice over there. While the housemanship you do in Nigeria will make you eligible for practice in Nigeria.

      For Nigerian international medical graduates, it’s always best to do the Nigerian housemanship regardless of whether your internal medical school or their medical council offer theirs.

      So, you should do both housemanship as it gives you the eligibility to practice in the two countries.

    3. Actually in my school we do our internship and it is acceptable here in Nigeria. I decided to redo my internship because I graduated since 2016. But it is absolutely unnecessary to do it again if you don’t want to. All you have to do is get your internship certificate verified by EPIC and apply at MDCN for full license. Writing MDCN exam does not necessitate repeating your internship. Hope this helps. If you have any other questions, just go to the MDCN office in your area and ask them.

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