Old saying in medicine never be first never be last. It is very unlikely that you will be able to get a clerkship in the US despite what they say. If you do not have a US clerkship you have almost no chance of getting a residency. If you do not have a residency you cannot practice in the US. There are other programs like this in Mexico and the Carribean. Similar results. There is no real shortcut for medical school.
I think that the internet coursework may make some sense. If you look over on studentdoctor.net a lot of the students don't go to class and study on their own. However for clerkship your attendance is mandatory and that is what you are really paying for. The reputation of the school and its clerkships is what gets people into residencies.
Also consider the cost. according to the australian article the cost is around $100k. Consider then the opportunity cost. If you take the average NP cost for salary.com (not saying this is accurate, just using it for comparison) of $77k and the average FP salary of $150k. then the opportunity cost is:
2 years of clerkship (-$154k)
3 years of residency ($40k (resident salary) - 77k = - -$74k
So you are looking at a cost of $325k which will take at least 5 years if you make the average salary for FP which is unlikely in your first few years (this does not include the cost of living in Samoa for two years). So it would take at least 10 years for this to pay off financially. If you make more than the average it would take longer. Once you are established in practice it rarely makes financial sense to go to medical school. Finally there is a very real and fairly high (in my opinion) chance that you will not match to a residency. Then you have just wasted a ton of money for nothing.
Let them start showing residency placement in the US and its worth another look.
David Carpenter, PA-C