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Vol. 7 No. 1 (2003)

Electives in the Developing World

  • A. Shiner
  • Jaime Miranda
October 27, 2020


Choosing to do an elective in a developing country can be a gamble. Everyone has heard stories of unsuspecting students being deposited in a remote hospital and told that actually they are the doctor, and here are the hordes of patients they must look after for the next eight weeks. As if this isn't enough, the students often find themselves suffering severe culture shock, working in a health care service that bears no resemblance to the one they are accustomed to and encountering patients who frequently present with either unfamiliar diseases or unfamiliar presentations of familiar diseases.


  1. The Student British Medical Journal:
  2. Wilson, M. The Medics' Guide to Work and Electives Around the World (2ndEdition). Edward Arnold, London, 2003.
  3. International Health and Medical Education Centre:
  4. The Wellcome Trust:


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