Why go overseas?

There are countless benefits to undertaking your physiotherapy elective in the developing world. You’ll become more creative working in low-resource hospitals, connect with peers from around the world, strengthen your confidence, become a more effective communicator, and stand out from the crowd by having ‘overseas physiotherapy placement’ on your CV. All this in addition to exploring an exotic country on the other side of the world.

What's Included?

  • Our famous elective 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 when it comes to physiotherapy placements. All you have to do is let us know where your clinical skills and interests lie and we’ll spare no expense engineering a physiotherapy placement that precisely suits your needs. Our electives are far from ordinary, they’re custom designed electives tailored specifically to you. One of our Elective Experts will design your experience from organising your visa to arranging your in-hospital experience and beyond. They also oversee all of our in-country operations, and make regular trips overseas to make sure the programmes are meeting our incredibly high standards.

physiotherapy electives

Go Further

Physiotherapy electives abroad involve exposure to a range of uncommon conditions and unconventional treatments that you won’t have seen in the UK. In some destinations, for example, electrotherapy is still used. People in developing countries often can’t afford healthcare. That coupled with the long travel times to hospitals, means patients won’t seek care until it’s absolutely necessary. This means you’ll see cases that are far more severe than you’re used to at home. This is the perfect opportunity to add something extra special to your list of experiences and get yourself ahead.

physiotherapy elective

ON THE GROUND

From the moment you land our teams on the ground will begin providing 24/7 support from our large, fully catered, private, security guarded accommodation. What’s more our houses are exclusively for the use of Work the World students. In addition you’ll also be given exclusive access to MyTrip - our interactive placement tracking and information tool. All our houses are staffed by Programme Managers, their assistants, in-house chefs who’ll cook you delicious breakfasts and dinners (and BBQs), a housekeeper, and a fully trained security guard for complete peace of mind.

physiotherapy electives abroad

Physiotherapy elective destinations

Cambodia - Phnom Penh
Monk in Angkor Wat Cambodia. Ta Prohm Khmer ancient Buddhist temple in jungle forest
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Sprawling out from the mighty Mekong river, Cambodia’s capital is a hub of eclectic contrasts, where sacred Buddhist templessit alongside marketplaces touting knock-off brands. Try traditional street food, explore the city's vibrant nightlife, boat along the river to discover rural rice paddies, and head to the coast for white sands and crystal waters.

 

A Physiotherapy Elective in Cambodia will open your eyes to how your overseas counterparts cope with heavily limited resources. Using hand-made equipment, you could assist in the treatment of patients presenting an extraordinary range of conditions, from meningitis to cerebral palsy. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Phnom Penh.

Monk in Angkor Wat Cambodia. Ta Prohm Khmer ancient Buddhist temple in jungle forest

The Philippines - Batangas
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Living and working in Batangas offers the best of two worlds. You’ll live in the heart of a laid-back Filipino culture, with access to traditional bars and restaurants, and at the same time have access to some of The Philippine’s most beautiful natural wonders like volcano lakes, beaches, and dive spots.

 

On an Physiotherapy Elective in Batangas you’ll work with a dedicated team working with a range of cases. You might even incorporate some Occupational Therapy practices into your experience. Under the supervision of local specialists, you’ll come to understand the challenges to providing adequate care brings when resources are low — using improvised rehabilitation equipment, for example, is quite normal. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Batangas.

Nepal - Pokhara
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Pokhara is a laid-back, welcoming city nestled in the foothills of the majestic Himalayan Mountains whose snowy peaks, on a clear day, can be seen towering over the city. In your free time you can explore the winding streets of the city, go paragliding above the lake, trek through the Himalayas, and simply enjoy the many international bars and eateries this backpackers' haven has to offer.

 

On a Physiotherapy Elective here, you’ll work in a specialist Rehabilitation Hospital, which is extremely well-equipped by Nepalese standards. With a proactive attitude, you could assist in cases of stroke rehabilitation, neuromuscular disorders, and soft tissue injury. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Pokhara.

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Sri Lanka - Kandy
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Kandy is a hub of rich historical culture — hindu and buddhist temples, palaces, traditional restaurants and local craft markets. When you want a break form city life, relax on golden beaches, become an explorer on a jungle safari, battle rapids on a white water rafting trip, and soar above the vast tea plantations on a hot-air balloon ride.

 

On a Physiotherapy Elective you’ll work with an amazing team in the local teaching hospital. The hospital promotes patient interaction, so you could also find yourself working directly with handmade equipment local staff have improvised. Time in the busy outpatient department will give you insight into specific, and often advanced cases that patients present. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Kandy.

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Sri Lanka - Anuradhapura
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Anuradhapura is a land with two faces — the ancient and the new. On one hand, you'll see sacred stupas, hindu and buddhist temples, and ancient palaces. On the other, you'll experience the humble personalities, and laid-back local culture that seem so distant from the local population's grand heritage. Be sure to go on safari in the national parks, and swim in the clear blue waters and relax on the paradise beaches Anuradhapura's East Coast offers. 

 

On a Physiotherapy Elective here, you could worlk with local specialists to rehabilitate amputees who were left by the Sri Lankan Civil War. Limited and often outdated equipment will present you with new challenges. The Physiotherapy Unit works across the Neurosurgical and Surgical ICU wards too. This will giving you plenty of opportunity to broaden your clinical experiences. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Anuradhapura.

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Tanzania - Dar es Salaam
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Dar es Salaam is Tanzania's second largest city — a growing metropolis with a huge population who enjoy an active pace of life, but have a laid-back demeanour. The city is surrounded by a wealth of natural beauty that begs exploration. Visit game parks, climb mountains, and the white sand beaches and clear waters of Zanzibar are a short boart ride away.

 

Clinically speaking, you’ll be working in a department that focuses on Orthopedic cases like road accidents, construction and logging injuries, and domestic accidents. The use of dated and sometimes handmade rehabilitatoin equipment will highlight the lack of resources in the field, which is still developing in Tanzania. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Dar es Salaam. 

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Nepal - Kathmandu
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Kathmandu, Nepal's capital city, has a vivid and ancient history. This history is best enjoyed through things like discovering the city's architecture, trying traditional food, and immersing yourself in local culture. The city does have modern aspects, too. Mmotorbikes speed down cobbled streets, Buddhist monks use mobile phones, and market stalls sell traditional dishes alongside western food.

 

Physiotherapy is a developing field in Nepal. This means you’ll observe staff and their practices taking shape into a form of Physiotherapy unique to the country. Cases of cerebral palsy, strokes, and burns are all commonplace in this evolving department, so you can expect to hone your skills across a range of conditions. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Kathmandu.

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Philippines - Iloilo
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Iloilo lies on the coast of a tropical island and is, expectedly, surrounded by natural beauty. Palm trees line the coast's beautiful beaches, wild endangered animals roam through dense jungles, and if you’re adventurous enough, you can hike the mountains. The city itself is a unique example of a modern Philippines cultural centre complete with restaurants, bars, seafront cafes, and shopping centres.

 

Physiotherapy Placements in our partner hospital will allow you to work with a dedicated department team who cater to the city and surrounding rural areas. Common rehabilitation cases include working with amputees, and those with cerebral palsy, spinal cord injuries, and traumatic brain surgeries. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Iloilo.

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Peru - Arequipa
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Arequipa is an increasingly modern city, but the fingerprints of more ancient peoples and cultures can be found everywhere. Women weave traditional patterns in local textile markets, food vendors serve cuisines for which the recipes date back thousands of years, and modern buildings stand beside Aztec monuments. Outside the city, trek through the Amazon jungle, visit floating villages, and climb to the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu.

 

On your Physiotherapy Elective, you’ll begin to draw comparisons between the holistic rehabilitation favoured in Peru, versus what you're used to at home. Treating patients from the poorer sections of society — many of whom suffer from birth defects and long-untreated conditions — will open your eyes to the unique challenges faced by local staff. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Arequipa.

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Ghana - Takoradi
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Takoradi is an energetic port city with a traditional African feel. Situated on Africa’s West coast, the region boasts historical as well as natural curiosities. You'll find a series of ageing colonial forts dotted along stretches of golden coastline, and further afield you can swim in cascading waterfalls, walk through the jungle canopy, and visit remote African villages to get a sense of rural life.

 

Bringing a go-getter attitude to your Physiotherapy Elective here will help you get more practical experience working with patients. You can expect to work with patients in need of post-operative rehabilitation, who've had strokes, suffered burns, and live with Erb’s Palsy. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Takoradi.

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Tanzania - Arusha
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Arusha is an energetic city whose inhabitants enjoy hustle and bustle, yet have found a perfectly steady pace of life. Surrounded by lush landscapes the city is also a gateway to adventure. Spot lions, rhino and other rare wildlife on safari, marvel at views of Kilimanjaro — Africa's highest peak — from the summit of Arusha's own mountain, and scuba dive in the emeral-green Indian Ocean.

 

On a Physiotherapy Elective here you could work with a wide range of conditions including child cerebral palsy and post-surgical rehabilitation. Burns from gas cookers and road traffic accidents are also surprisingly common here, and you may even find yourself working with improvised, handmade rehabilitation equipment. Read stories from those who’ve already travelled with us to Arusha.

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Case Study

"An experience I will never forget"

MAISY PROVAN, CARDIFF UNIVERSITY 2017

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Foster, Caitlin

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"You get to see how patients are treated without all the tools we use at home."

Caitlin Foster, Monash University 2015

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Dunsford, Caitlin

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"My time in the hospital was rewarding both personally and professionally".

Caitlin Dunsford , Professional Placement 2015

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Fawcett, Rebecca

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"There are also so many amazing chances to travel, at very affordable prices".

Rebecca Fawcett, University of Birmingham 2015

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Heil, Madison

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"I would definitely recommend this program, all the Nepalese people are wonderful".

Madison Heil, University of San Francisco 2015

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From our blog