3 Questions you should ask your placement organizer before undertaking your placement abroad
I love the excitement that comes with travelling to a new place. I always look forward to meeting new people, trying new food and experiencing their culture. One thing that I dread however is getting lost in a new place. In as much as it’s always fun narrating it later to friends, on the day of event, there is always little to smile about. Healthcare placements abroad are normally one of those times in the life of a medical student and premed students that one normally looks forward to. It is normally a great opportunity to spend around 2 to round 8 weeks working in a different hospital setting, discovering medicine in a different environment and interacting with a new culture. If you ask me, that sounds interesting! Plus the fact that you will be able to enjoy the beautiful sceneries and wild. But this comes after months of planning. Organizing for an international hospital work experience is not a walk in the park, especially when you are doing it alone. Apart from spending a lot of time working on the logistics, the bureaucratic maze that one needs to conquer in unfamiliar territory on a daily basis can be quite daunting if undertaking it alone and hence the need of working with a placement organizer like Elective Africa to organize your placement.
There are a number of placement organizers. Electives. Net provides a list of them from where you can choose from depending on your objectives and interests. Free advice, always ensure you have clearly defined your destination in terms of what you want to experience before approaching your placement organizer. That way, you are able to get your placement customized to suit your interest. That having been said, here are 3 Questions you need to ask your placement organizer before undertaking your placement abroad;
- What is the cost?
- Where will you be undertaking your placement?
- What will you be doing?
What will be the Cost?
Different organizer will provide different costing for organising your placement. The prices ranges and so does the package. It is therefore very important to inquire about the cost and what their package includes. If they provide accommodation, which kind of accommodation do they provide? Is it a Hostel or homestay or apartments? It is also key to know how safe you accommodation location is. You can always request the placement advisor for an approximate budget that you will need to spend while on-ground. This is just to help you in the planning
Where will you be undertaking your placement?
Your placement organizer should be able to advise you on the best clinical site depending on your statement of objective. For instance if you have identify a department that you would want to rotate in, your organizer should find a perfect Clinical site that will allow you to get the best experience in terms of number of cases that you will witness. Elective Africa has identified different clinical sites depending on their specialties. One interested in Psychiatry will for instance go to Port Reitz Hospital in Mombasa for a specialty experience in psychiatry. Which type of destination will you prefer? Is it Coastal, urban or rural placement? This once identified makes it easier to know which clinical site you will be allocated
What will you be doing?
Hey, you haven’t travelled half across the world to come watch the ceiling of the hospital. Ask your organizer what your typical day in the hospital would like. This way you are able to know well in advance what to expect. Also find out on other activities you can be involved in when not in the hospital e.g volunteering and day excursions.
Have any questions on electives abroad in Kenya/Tanzania? Get in touch with us.