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Medical and Veterinary Electives



Ahrandeep Aujla - Medical elective in Japan, Summer 2016
After two weeks of travelling to explore the beautiful country, I began the medical part of my elective at Jikei University Hospital, Tokyo and later travelled to the private Kameda Hospital, Kamogawa. The language barrier was initially quite an obstacle but I managed to find some doctors who were confident in English to explain many of the cases...Read more

Adam Brayne – Medical Elective, Port Vila Central Hospital, Vanuatu
I went to Vanuatu and worked at the largest hospital in the country - Port Vila Central. It is one of two public hospitals in the country, and the only one to have surgical theatres. I chose Port Vila as I wanted to experience medicine in a (more) resource-limited setting than the NHS and to do some surfing on world class reefs....Read more

Katie Gibson – Mongolia veterinary elective, Summer 2016
My month in Mongolia was a real rollercoaster ride - plenty of less than smooth travel, getting to know many new people (not the easiest of tasks when you speak exactly 12 words of Mongolian), and working in challenging conditions...Read more

Arav Gupta - Student Wilderness Medicine Conference,  Edinburgh 2016
Having recently returned from a fantastic elective over Summer, which gave me medical experience in both the Amazon jungle and the high Andes, I’ve been plagued by the travel bug ever since, so when I saw advertised the Student Wilderness Medicine Conference in Edinburgh it didn’t take long to make the decision to go with my elective partner...Read more

Arav Gupta – Medical elective in South America, Summer 2016
My medical elective took me across 4 countries on one continent: South America. Having done Spanish at A Level I was keen to rekindle the Latin spirit and visit this amazing continent for elective...Read more

George Sydenham – Medical Elective in Borneo, Summer 2016
I spent my elective in Kuching, and was able to spend time in Sarawak General Hospital with several medical teams: general medicine, respiratory medicine and neurology. I was also able to observe a clinic at the private Borneo Medical centre, and to spend time with a rural outreach team in a couple of fairly remote villages close to the Indonesian border...Read more

Josh Wade - Medical elective in Tanzania and Uganda, summer 2016
I went to Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre (KCMC) in Tanzania and Kasangati Health Centre IV in Uganda. The former is a large tertiary referral centre with multiple departments and a large affiliated medical school while the latter is one step below a hospital run mostly by clinicians and a handful of doctors...Read more

Tom Williams - Medical Elective - (HCMC) Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Summer 2016     
I undertook my elective at the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit (OUCRU) based at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), hoping to see the presentation, diagnosis and management of a range of infectious diseases I would not be exposed to in the UK. The hospital is a tertiary referral centre for the south of Vietnam, and therefore serves a theoretical population of tens of millions...Read more


Arham Qureshi - Medical Elective - Borneo, Summer 2015
When trying to decide on an elective destination last year, I wanted to experience a different style of living as well as culture, which would also be reflected in the delivery of healthcare. Malaysian Borneo soon popped up as an ideal destination encompassing all these features.... Read more

Jon Whitby - Medical Elective – Antigua, June 2015
I had wanted to visit the Caribbean for many years and so emailed several hospitals on different English-speaking islands. Mount St. John’s Medical Centre in Antigua became my elective destination and  I chose to spend four weeks in the hospital studying paediatrics...Read more

Peter Harries - Medical Elective - Sydney, June 2015
For years I have wanted to explore "Down Under" and this was the perfect opportunity to gain an appreciation of what it was like to live and work in Australia and see how medicine was practiced in a country where there was a great deal of private healthcare....Read more

Lizzie Wicks - Medical Elective - Johannesburg, Summer 2015
I worked in Helen Joseph Hospital, a medium sized hospital in Johannesburg in the Emergency Department. Given the large volume of trauma patients due to both the high violent crime rate and the high road traffic accident rate I spent most of my time working on the surgical side...Read more

Charlotte Little – Medical Elective – Ghana, Summer  2015
I spent 9 weeks in Ghana based in Cape Coast. Overall, it was an eye-opening, heart-warming, challenging, fascinating and fun experience. I spent 6 weeks of my elective working in the Central Regional Teaching Hospital in Cape Coast, the largest medical facility in the region...Read more

Pru Gardiner - Veterinary placement in Kentucky, Summer 2015
I spent three weeks as an extern at Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital in Kentucky, a large equine referral centre with over 50 veterinarians where I split my time between the hospital and the ambulatory vets. In the hospital I saw a very large and varied caseload....Read more


Omar Hausien – Medical Elective, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, 2014
I visited the plastic surgery laboratory at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, USA. The lab experience hugely exceeded my expectations and left me inspired for a future in academic surgery..Read more

Tomek Cymes (Clinical Medicine) – Zambia, Summer 2014
For my elective I went to Monze Mission Hospital in Zambia. I spent 5 weeks rotating through the major wards (medical, surgical, paediatric, obs & gynae and outpatient/GP/A&E), with the last 2 weeks set aside to spend on the most interesting one (which turned out to be surgical)....Read more

Richard Heywood- Medical elective, Christchurch (New Zealand)- June/July 2014
I chose to go to Christchurch in New Zealand where I decided to spend my time studying Haematology. During my placement I was able to combine clinical work, involving looking after patients on the wards, and work in the laboratory...Read more

Elizabeth Robinshaw – Medical Elective in Tobago, Summer 2014
I chose to spend my medical elective in Scarborough General Hospital in Tobago. I had planned to spend my seven weeks in a general medical ward or the accident and emergency department...Read more

Jonathan Tham (Clinical Medicine) - Scarborough General Hospital, Tobago, 2014
I spent seven weeks in Scarborough General Hospital (the only hospital in Tobago). These are my thoughts. Generally an elective in Tobago ...Read more

Chris Ramsden –Elective, Scarborough General Hospital, Tobago, 2014
Where I went, and why - I spent my seven-week elective period on the island of Tobago, part of the country of Trinidad and Tobago...Read more

Elsa Morgan – Elective in Scarborough hospital, Tobago, 2014
Scarborough Hospital on the island of Tobago was where I spent my elective. For the majority of time I was based in the medical ward but I also spent time in the A&E...Read more


Ryan Breslin - Adelaide, South Australia, Summer 2013
The first four weeks of my elective was spent with the Royal Adelaide Hospital Trauma Service. This is one of only two dedicated services specifically for adult trauma patients in South Australia and sees approximately 1800 cases per year. I shadowed the trauma registrar...Read more

Jamie King –Santiago de Cuba, Summer 2013
Having landed in Havana, it was a 14 hour bus journey to Santiago on the other end of the island, where I would complete my elective. After reading about the emphasis placed on health promotion and disease prevention in Cuba and the wide accessibility of family doctors, I decided to spend the first three weeks in primary care...Read more

Louise Mundy - Hopitaly Vaovao Mahafaly, Mandritsara, Madagascar
Madagascar is one of the poorest countries in the world. When I was there, government hospitals were pretty much non-functional as the government had failed to pay doctors, nurses and teachers for months, so they had been on strike since March. As HVM is a mission hospital it was still running, and the lack of other options for patients meant that it was even busier than usual.....Read more


Francesca Yeldham - Sarawak Malaysia, Summer 2012
I spent 2-3 weeks in the capital of Malaysian Borneo, Kuching, in Kuching General Hospital and then 4-5 weeks in a range of healthcare services including several regional hospitals. I had planned to split my time on obs and gynae, paediatrics and accident and emergency medicine. Instead I spent far more time in much smaller clinics and hospitals and saw far more than I had expected of general medicine and community health care...Read more

Mariam Rela – Mongolia, Summer 2012
I’ve always thought that medical volunteering in a different country would be a greatly valuable experience, observing what the health systems are like in developing countries and learning clinical skills which will undoubtedly be beneficial for me in my later medical career. Mongolia appeared an elusive and attractive destination to undertake this learning. We were placed in a family clinic for two weeks ...Read more

Rona Anderson-Witty – Bangladesh, Summer 2012
I spent the vast majority of my time in Dhaka at the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research (ICDDR), a busy charity hospital dedicated to treating diarrhoeal disease as well as housing laboratories and public health offices. The wards at ICDDR hold hundreds of cholera cots, often with less than two feet between them, and are noisy, hot but surprisingly smell-free and pretty clean. They have an emergency ward for acute cases ...Read more

Amalie Roche (Veterinary Medicine) - India, December 2012
This Christmas I was one of four Cambridge vet students who went out to volunteer in India during December. I spent a month working at an animal hospital and rescue centre called the ‘Tree of Life for Animals’ (TOLFA), situated near Ajmer, in Northern India. We used our skills to help with the daily treatments of stray dogs, puppies and farm animals...Read more


Hannah Rickman - Elective, Nkhoma hospital, Malawi, 2011
I spent my elective (with 2 other Pembroke students) in Nkhoma hospital, Malawi. This is a mission hospital in a small village about an hour away from the capital, Lilongwe. While the village is small, the hospital serves a large surrounding rural community...Read more