A fresh perspective

After a highly specialised medical elective abroad with Work the World you’ll be better prepared for a successful career in medicine than anyone who took the easy route and stayed at home. You’ll come to appreciate the ingenuity professionals use to combat problems such as ageing equipment, high-patient numbers, under-resourced wards, and more.

What's Included?

  • Our famous placement tailoring service
  • Supervised clinical experience
  • Extensive pre-departure preparation
  • Support from in-country teams, 24/7
  • Private, spacious, catered housing
  • Free local language lessons

YOUR ELECTIVE, CUSTOM-MADE

‘We can make it happen’ - words we live by. Let us know your clinical interests and we’ll tailor your medical elective with clinical precision right down to the smallest item. It’s important to know that these are not standard medical electives; they are custom-fit experiences that meet the specific wants and needs you have as an individual. Our team of experts will arrange your hospital placement, pair you with the right supervisors, handle visa administration and more — the service is fully comprehensive. Our operations team is also responsible for overseeing all on-the-ground operations, meaning there’s no one better for the job.

medical electives

GO FURTHER

Under the guidance of your in-country supervisor you’ll be introduced to a range of unusual cases and conditions such as dengue fever, typhoid and malaria. Diagnosing and treating them will teach you new skills and impart you with knowledge that would otherwise be impossible to acquire. The cost and distance of healthcare facilities in developing countries deters patients from seeking care until the last minute. This means you’ll see a number of advanced-stage conditions too.

medical internships

ON THE GROUND

When you’re in your country of choice you’ll receive 24/7 support from our welcoming in-country teams and a room in our private, security guarded, fully catered houses. To make it easy to find out everything about your medical elective all in one place, we’ll also give you access to MyTrip, our online elective tracking and information platform. Our sole focus is the creation of exceptional overseas clinical experiences, and we’re proud to offer the best elective placements available anywhere.

medical electives abroad

Medical placement destinations

Cambodia - Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh is one of Southeast Asia’s most exhilarating cities, jam-packed with ancient ruins, fragrant street food, and chanting monks in beautiful saffron robes. Come sun-down, the capital bursts into life, with restaurants spilling out onto busy streets and modern bars open until the early hours. On a medical elective here you’ll hone your skills in a range of departments, confronting tropical infectious diseases like malaria, influenza, TB, HIV, and more. Patients will likely present at stages significantly more advanced than you’re used to. 

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The Philippines - Batangas

Batangas city is the ideal jumping-off point to discover idyllic beaches, trek through lush rainforests and rice paddies, as well as diving with incredible marine life. The city itself is small and welcoming place of contrasts. You’ll find music festivals and street parties come the summer months and crumbling, yet beautiful architecture. On a Medical Elective here, you’ll get to grips with cases of everything from dengue fever to malaria. You’ll also have the opportunity to hone your skills in departments like Paediatrics, Radiology, Anesthesiology, and Rehabilitative Medicine, gaining acute insight into how professionals employ what limited resources they have. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Batangas, click here

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Ghana - Takoradi

Ghana lies on Africa’s stunning West Coast, and boasts white beaches, fishing villages, and thriving jungles. The town itself is a cultural melting-pot, with bustling markets, bars, and restaurants. Specialists keen to share their knowledge will grant you access to a range of top departments on your medical placement. These include A&E, Female Surgical, and NICU. Time in the hospital’s HIV clinic will open your eyes to the realities of providing care with limited drugs and medical technologies. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Takoradi, click here.

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Tanzania - Arusha

The lively city of Arusha is the perfect jumping off point for adventure. Mountain climbing, safaris, volcanoes, markets, and local restaurants all lie right on your doorstep. Proactivity in hospital departments like Internal Medicine and Paediatrics will present opportunities like working with advanced stage HIV, hypertension, pneumonia and unfamiliar conditions like malaria. Should you choose to do so, witnessing surgeries in theatre will be a highlight of your placement experience. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Arusha, click here.

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Tanzania - Dar es Salaam

Despite its large city feel, Dar es Salaam is surrounded by natural beauty - think safaris, views of Mt. Kilimanjaro, and nearby Zanzibar island for some of the best beaches in the world. On your medical placement, you’ll flourish in busy departments like Infectious Diseases and Emergency Medicine, and work with cases of malaria, dengue fever and cholera. Spend time in the Psychiatric Ward’s secure wing for insight into the local approach to mental health issues. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Dar es Salaam, click here.

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Nepal - Pokhara

Pokhara is a lush valley tucked at the feet of the misty Himalayan mountains. The surrounding areas offer amazing opportunities like paragliding, elephant safaris, and trekking to ancient Buddhist temples. Show proactivity on your medical placement and you’ll work with unfamiliar conditions like leprosy, worm infestations, and even snake bites. A spell in the region’s only NICU will highlight the impact a lack of resources has on the lives of local people. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Pokhara, click here.

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Nepal - Kathmandu

Kathmandu is Nepal’s lively capital and is home to ornate Buddhist temples, winding market streets, buzzing nightlife, mischievous monkeys, and the majestic Himalayas. Nearby, try activities like paragliding, bungee jumping, and whitewater rafting. Display enthusiasm on your medical placement and opportunities in specialisms will arise; Psychiatry, Forensic Medicine, Cardiothoracics, Microbiology, Biochemistry – you name it. Be proactive and you’ll get involved in daily lectures, case presentations, and community programs. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Kathmandu, click here.

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Philippines - Iloilo

Iloilo is the perfect healthcare placement destination if tropical beaches, sunshine, and clear seas float your boat. Dive off the coast into an underwater world, join cultural festivals, and tour local bars and restaurants for lively nights out. A confident attitude on your medical elective will provide great patient interaction, as you examine tropical diseases like dengue fever and malaria. The high-sugar Filipino diet also means cases of hypertension and cardiac arrest are frequent, which you’ll likely encounter on placement. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Iloilo, click here.

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Sri Lanka - Kandy

Kandy is home to stunning natural beauty, ornate temples, exquisite cuisine, and ancient traditions. You’ll find plenty of opportunity for adventure here too, for example water sports off the coast and trekking through jungles in search of rare wildlife. On a medical placement you’ll learn how local specialists fight tropical diseases like malaria and dengue fever. Working in the Renal Transplant Unit, which performs 80% of all kidney transplants in the country, will open your eyes to the hospital’s lack of resources. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Kandy, click here.

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Sri Lanka - Anuradhapura

The ancient city of Anuradhapura never fails to impress. Stupas, temples, and sacred palaces make up the old city, and the new city boasts restaurants, bars, and bustling markets. Safaris, national parks, and paradise beaches lay nearby. On a medical placement you’ll assist in a teaching hospital, which actively promotes patient interaction, and work in departments including ICU and Neurosurgery. Working with cardiovascular diseases and advanced stage cancers will highlight the limitations professionals here face on a daily basis. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Anuradhapura, click here.

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Peru - Arequipa

Peru is stunning. Explore the remains of Machu Picchu – an ancient Incan city, trek through the lush Amazon jungle, join colourful local festivals, and boat across Lake Titicaca to visit its famous floating villages. On a medical placement here you’ll work with rare cases such as arsenic poisoning, as well as conditions unique to South America like Chagas disease. In the largest Oncology Department in Southern Peru you’ll have the chance to work with radiotherapy, brachytherapy, and chemotherapy, treating cancers uncommon in the developed world. To read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Arequipa, click here.

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Sarah van der Valk

Case Study

"The time I spent in Tanzania was genuinely the most amazing experience in my life."

Sarah van der Valk, Maastricht University 2016

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Case Studies

Case Study

"I highly recommend a Work the World placement for anyone looking to broaden their scope and understanding of healthcare".

Tamalee Henson, University of Western Australia 2016

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Social Media

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"Exposure to this has helped me to develop both clinically and emotionally".

Katie Yates: A Photo Review, University of Sheffield 2016

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Case Studies - Saskia van Ool

Case Study

"We rode piki-piki’s and watched a famous Maasai tradition - the goat sacrifice".

Saskia Van Ool - Maasai VHE , Maastricht University 2016

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Saha, Progga

Case Study

"Nepal has stolen a piece of my heart".

Progga Saha, Bond University 2016

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From our blog

What is a Medical Elective?

A Medical Elective is a placement medical students undertake as part of their degree. It’s up to you where you choose to go and what the theme of your medical placement will be, which is why they’re called ‘electives’.