An elective is an opportunity to travel to the developing world and undertake a placement in a healthcare system completely different from the NHS. On your healthcare elective placement, you’ll see the challenges local staff face when their hospitals don’t have the funds they need. An elective abroad also gives you the chance to see staff shortages, a scarcity of even the most basic equipment, and practices that differ from what you’ve learned. Discover our electives throughout Asia, Africa and Latin America. Our placements abroad are suitable for both students and professionals. 

Medical Electives

Medical Electives

When it comes to your elective abroad you can choose to rotate through general medicine, surgery, A&E, ICUs, anaesthesiology, OBG, and paediatrics… The choice is yours.

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Midwifery Electives

Midwifery Electives

Do your midwifery elective abroad and you’ll come home a changed person. You’ll be amazed at how resilient local midwives are in the face of a lack of hospital funding.

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Physiotherapy Placements

Physiotherapy Placements

Imagine trying to deliver effective therapies with limited equipment — a daily challenge for physios in the developing world. You'll see this firsthand on your elective abroad.

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Radiography Electives

Radiography Electives

As soon as you start your elective you’ll see that equipment and facilities aren’t the same as they are in the UK. In some destinations X-rays are still developed on film in a darkroom.

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Pharmacy Placements

Pharmacy Placements

On your elective you'll see very different drugs compared to the UK, even snake bite anti-venoms. You can even travel to rural areas to see traditional herbal medicine.

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Dentistry Electives

Dentistry Electives

You’ll see resource shortages and outdated equipment as soon as you start your elective. You'll also see patients with extremely advanced decay as many can't afford treatment.

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OT Electives

OT Electives

Late presentations and advanced cases are common on an elective in the developing world. You might even see conditions that are rare or don’t exist in the UK,  like leprosy.

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Paramedic Science Electives

Paramedic Science Electives

On your elective you’ll see how severe resource shortages affect practises. You could even see patients undergoing procedures like manual intubation without analgesia.

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What do our electives offer?

A Work the World elective gives you the chance to undertake a clinical placement in the developing world. You will spend time in a low-resource hospital and see unfamiliar practices and advanced conditions. You can even choose the departments you want to rotate through. Learn more here.

What are the benefits of a Work the World elective?

The benefits of our electives include:

  • Getting invaluable clinical experience in the field
  • Making yourself more attractive to employers
  • Building your personal and professional network
  • Doing some proper travelling
  • Sharpening your language and communication skills
  • Renewing your perspective on the NHS

What countries can I travel to on a Work the World elective?

Work the World organise electives in Africa, Asia or Latin America, with placements in 10 different countries: 1. Tanzania 2. Zambia 3. Vietnam 4. Cambodia 5. Indonesia 6. Mexico 7. Ghana 8. The Philippines 9. Nepal 10. Sri Lanka.

How long is a Work the World elective?

An elective is as long as you want it to be. Our minimum placement duration is one week, but students typically travel on their electives for 4 weeks. There is no upper limit to how long you can travel for.

What is an elective?

An elective is a clinical placement that medical and healthcare students undertake as part of their degree. If you want to undertake your elective placement abroad, get in touch with us today.