This database is compiled from student submissions and in no way represents the views of the JCU COMD. This is produced by JCUMSA based entirely on student submissions.

This is an ongoing project and we welcome new submissions to build up our database!

Please choose from the options below for reviews from JCU students about their experiences during Year 6 clinical elective:


Australia International

Trujillo, Peru
Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania
Lautoka, Fiji
Kathmandu, Nepal
Banting, Malaysia


South Australia


Flinders Medical Centre

How did you organise this? Applied to Director of Radiology, Flinders Medical Centre, and Director of Training, Flinders Medical Centre.

Specialties? Radiology

Clinical opportunities? Interventional radiology, nuclear radiology, cannulation.

Accommodation & facilities? Accommodation was self-sourced, not provided by hospital.

Busiest time of the day? 8am – 5pm 

Safety or ethical issues? Cultural challenges? Nil

How available and/or approachable were the staff? Extremely approachable, strong culture of learning and teaching at Flinders, very pleasant workplace.

Other activities you would recommend? Sport – fencing at Adelaide Swords Club, showjumping at Southern Sport Horses. Marion shopping centre, Glenelg jetty, Brighton beach, going to a Crows/Port AFL game.

Cost? $1000

Best bits of your placement? Everything!

Rate the experience overall? 5/5

Rate the teaching? 5/5 

Other comments? Flinders Medical Centre is an excellent facility to go to for a radiology elective placement. Having not been in any other areas of the hospital I can’t comment on other departments or specialties.




Royal Children’s Hospital

How did you organise this? University of Melbourne. Apply through paediatric electives. Contact was Pam Morrison. Must apply 12 months in advance and supply CV and cover letter. Very competitive. Can choose area of specialty.

Specialties? Paediatric neurology (everything except Paeds ED or Gen Paeds available)

Clinical opportunities? Minimal procedural. But lots of assisting in lumbar puncture, venepuncture and cannulation.

Accommodation & facilities? Must organise own.

Busiest time of the day? 8-5/6 Mon-Friday. Heavy work load!!

Safety or ethical issues? Cultural challenges? Nil

How available and/or approachable were the staff? Very! Pediatricians are the nicest people ever! Amazing work environment.

Other activities you would recommend? Shopping, eating, drinking coffee, being a hipster, shopping

Cost? $2000 plus spending money (flights from TSV, accom and elective costs)

Best bits of your placement? Networking, kids and working in literally the happiest place on earth. Working in a field you are truly passionate about. Lost of uni of melb students to make friends with!

Rate the experience overall? 5/5

Rate the teaching? 5/5

What would you do differently? Nothing! Maybe work even more hours to get an even better experience!

Other tips? Stay local and network! Particularly if you want to apply interstate for internship.



Trujillo, Peru

Hospital Florencia

How did you organise this? I arranged my elective through Medical Electives, a company run by Kevin who is British and now lives in Trujillo with his family. 

Languages? Spanish, a little English

Specialties? ED, home visits, surgery, medical outpatients, paediatrics (others available)

Clinical opportunities? My placement was mostly observational. I did attend theatre but I did not get a chance to practice many procedural skills. This is also because I was more interested in learning Spanish than I was in practicing procedures. If you have great Spanish than you will be able to get more hands on.

Accommodation & facilities? I’d recommend the home stay option. I stayed with a lovely couple, the man spoke reasonable English and this made it easy for me when I first arrived and spoke no Spanish. They provide most meals, you get your own room, you can use all the house facilities and they let us have people over for drinks. There are gyms, restaurants, shops and most things near by.

Busiest time of the day? Mon-Thursdays from 8-12 I was at the hospital, then home for lunch and siesta, from 2-6 I went to spanish class. On Fridays I only did a Spanish lesson in the morning and had a long weekend to travel.

Safety or ethical issues? Cultural challenges? I felt very safe and thought most people were really patient with me (my Spanish is basic).

How available and/or approachable were the staff? Kevin is a lovely man and goes out of his way to make sure your having a great time. He also gives great travel advice.

Other activities you would recommend? Medical spanish classes (I’d recommend these). Salsa dancing, lots of drinking (pisco sours are the national drink), being a tourist and visiting near by towns on weekends. 

Cost? Approx $8000

Best bits of your placement? Learning Spanish and have a real cultural immersion  I also loved visiting the towns and hiking up in the mountains.

Rate the experience overall? 5/5

Rate the teaching? 4/5

What would you do differently? Don’t be shy, just try and talk in Spanish to everyone.

Other tips? If you want to hike the Inca trek (I’d recommend this) then be aware that you need to book well in advance.


Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

Muhimbilli Hospital 

How did you organise this? via Work the World

Languages? English

Specialties? ED, Medical/Surgical Wards, Pediatrics etc

Clinical opportunities? Basic emergency room skills similar to here in Australia.

Accommodation & facilities? Share house up to 35people from across the world. Very good facilities, meals provided.

Busiest time of the day? 8am-12pm 4 days per week

Safety or ethical issues? Cultural challenges? Swahili is their national language but most staff spoke English – very difficult to talk to patients as they have poor education and no english.

How available and/or approachable were the staff? Very friendly.

Other activities you would recommend? Nightclubs, beaches, Zanzibar island, museums, football matches, markets.

Cost? $10,000

Best bits of your placement? Meeting local people and getting to see the more traditional side of Africa.

Rate the experience overall? 5/5

Rate the teaching? 4/5


Muhimbilli Hospital

How did you organise this? Work the World

Languages? English, Swahili

Specialties? ED, Paeds, General medicine, General surgery, O&G, Orthopaedics, Anaesthetics, ICU and NICU, Oncology, Plastics, Psychiatry

Clinical opportunities? Basic clinical procedures, vital obs monitoring, IV lines, cannulations etc.

Accommodation & facilities? Accommodation was within the Work the World house in Dar es Salaam. It was shared accommodation in a really big house with a swimming pool and lots of outdoor space. Learnt Swahili in the house as well to assist my placement (included in accommodation fee) and got 24/7 support from the in-country team who were a great help in planning activities outside of placement.

Busiest time of the day? 8am – 3pm. Night shifts were available to any interested students.

Safety or ethical issues? Cultural challenges? This was a placement in a developing nation and as a result, there were numerous procedural differences and cultural barriers to overcome. With the right attitude this was manageable and I felt supported by the Work the World team during the placement as well to help minimise this.

How available and/or approachable were the staff? Pretty good but the more interested you are, the better they are at opening opportunities for learning and hands on.

Other activities you would recommend? Went to Zanzibar for a weekend (just a boat ride away), also did a village healthcare week with Work the World which was amazing to live in a local community. Did a safari experience as well which was sensational and a must do in Tanzania. Thursday nights was BBQ night and always a celebration in the house. Also managed a few nights out at the local bars which was great fun.

Cost? $7,000

Best bits of your placement? Safari, Village Healthcare Week and learning Swahili. On the clinical side of things, seeing the difference in healthcare and cultural differences within the hospitals.

Rate the experience overall? 5/5

Rate the teaching? 4/5

What would you do differently? Learn some Swahili before arriving and read up on the cultural differences that I might expect … having a better idea before arrival might have helped prep me better.

Other tips? I did a split hospital placement in Dar es Salaam (3 weeks in one hospital, 3 in another and then the 1 week Village Healthcare Week) and I would encourage others to do the same.



Lautoka, Fiji

Lautoka Hospital 

How did you organise this? I arranged it myself by contacting Ms Alisi Batimoko of the Fijian National University and then arranged it with the ED Consultant at the hospital. I found out about this contact through the students who attended for the Med 5 Obs Gynae placement. Initially I asked for Obs Gynae but with no positions available I went into ED.

Languages? Itauki and Hindi

Specialties? ED, any other department but O&G

Clinical opportunities? Very practically based. A lot of opportunities for paracentesis, cannulations, IDC, suturing, being part of a team managing motor vehicle accidents. Virtually anything you say yes to.

Accommodation & facilities? I arranged accommodation at Northern club 10 minutes walk and it was fantastic. Safe, clean, secure, pool, food and a pub. Excellent place to stay if you are bringing your family across.

Busiest time of the day? Between 10 to 12 hours 5 days per week and shifts can be negotiated. I did day and evening shifts.

Safety or ethical issues? Cultural challenges? The Fijian people are the friendliest and nicest people on this earth. I had a very supportive team and staff were excellent. Patients were also very respectful.

How available and/or approachable were the staff? Very accommodating and funny.

Other activities you would recommend? We travelled and I socialised with the local population. It is cheap and easy to see the rest of Fiji if you catch the local buses. I would recommend a trip out to the Islands Yasawa and Malaleuca group.

Cost? I brought 7 people who stayed for 6.5 weeks and went to school and paid for 2 rooms. Airtickets were $600 return from Brisbane, food per week $100 Fijian for 7 people and accommodation was $3000 Fijian for 2 rooms for 7 people. They didn’t charge me extra for extra people.

Best bits of your placement? The people we met. My children made lifelong friends with people they met at school. I made friends with the members of the local church I attended, I would recommend attending a Fijian service where they sing live an amazing experience. I made friends and hung out with some of the staff members and the pub staff and members where we stayed were very social and friendly.

Rate the experience overall? 5/5

Rate the teaching? 4/5

What would you do differently? Whilst I enjoyed Emergency I would have split my rotation to another speciality. They are more than happy for you to do so but I was happy in ED.

Other tips? Great place to bring your family as it is close, the school is next to the hospital and very accommodating if you want to have your kids in school. market is just down the road for fresh food and everyone in Fiji was so loving and kind. It was so enjoyable I will go back next year for volunteer work in the same hospital.


Kathmandu, Nepal

Tribuvan Hospital

How did you organise this? via Work the World

Languages? Nepalese, Hindi, English

Specialties? Paediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, etc

Clinical opportunities? It was an observational placement – all placements in Nepal are observational.

Accommodation & facilities? Accommodation through Work the World was great – the house is huge, you generally share a room with 2-3 other people. Breakfast and dinner is provided, it’s always delicious with a good range.

Busiest time of the day? 8am – lunch

Safety or ethical issues? Cultural challenges? Language barriers. Earthquakes.

How available and/or approachable were the staff? The majority of Nepalese I encountered are friendly and always look out for visitors in their country.

Other activities you would recommend? Hiking. Great night life. Jungle resorts. White water rafting. So much to see – temples, temples and more temples!

Cost? $6,000

Best bits of your placement? Lots of interesting clinical cases that I’ve never encountered in Australia. Great new friends. Unforgettable experiences.

Rate the experience overall? 5/5

Rate the teaching? 3/5

What would you do differently? Learn more Nepalese beforehand!

Other tips? Look into working in a remote village – we did it for a week – it was the best time I had clinically. You also live with a Nepalese family which is fantastic – but not for the faint hearted!


Banting, Malaysia

Hospital Banting 

How did you organise this? The application form for elective posting in the Ministry of Health Malaysian Facilities can be found online. The applications should be submitted at least three months before commencing posting. You will be posted to the department of your choice subject to vacancy. If the above conditions are acceptable, you may submit the application form, the dean’s letter and photocopy of your passport (for foreigners) to your choice of Hospital.

Languages? Malay

Specialties? Internal Medicine, ED

Clinical opportunities? Cannulation, blood taking, suturing, history taking, physical examination

Accommodation & facilities? There is no accommodation provided. I stayed at my friend’s house but there is hotel and house around for rent.

Busiest time of the day? Weekdays from 8am-5pm

Safety or ethical issues? Cultural challenges? Nil

How available and/or approachable were the staff? The clinical staff are very helpful and knowledgeable.

Other activities you would recommend? Beautiful beaches around the area.

Cost? $0

Best bits of your placement? I have a lot of hands-on experience eg. cannulation and venepuncture. I become confident and good at them.

Rate the experience overall? 4/5

Rate the teaching? 3/5

What would you do differently? Involve more in the night shift. It would be interesting to do on-call with the team.

Other tips? Experience different healthcare system is quite fun.


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