Elective Grants Program Report Library

To see the potential of an Elective Grant we encourage you to view the reports of our past recipients.

These students visited regions all over the world and have incredible stories and photographs to share.

Africa

  • Hilary Brown - Angola

    Hilary travelled to the CEML Hospital in Lubango, Angola in 2016. Hilary had a diverse elective, which she found enlightening, sobering, inspiring and devastating, while opening her eyes to a truly unique place in the world.

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  • Jessica Dalwood - Cape Town

    Jessica undertook her elective at Khayelitsha District Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa. Working in Emergency Medicine and Trauma proved to be a hands-on experience, one where supplies such as sterile gloves, syringes and chairs were not taken for granted. Her report highlights how medicine is a universal language, the real meaning of a ‘busy’ shift and the beauty that can be found in trauma.

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  • Julian Chung - Lesotho

    In December 2015, Julian participated in an elective at the Maluti Adventist Hospital in Lesotho. During his time there, Julian had the opportunity to help in a low resource hospital and learn from Lesotho’s best doctors, experience a new culture, people and community, and widen his horizons and understanding of many different global health challenges.

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  • Alexandra Ridley - Malawi

    Alexandra undertook an elective at the World Medical Fund for Children, in the Central Region of Malawi. This unique experience allowed her to see parts of Malawi she would never have seen as a tourist and experience the generous and warm culture. However, it also revealed the extent of poverty in the region and the gut-wrenching reality of communities that don’t have access to basic healthcare.

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  • Alistair Tinson - Rwanda

    Rwanda is broken into five major provinces. The largest and most populated is the Eastern Province, which is where Alistair undertook his elective at the Rwamagana Hospital. Alistair spent majority of his time in the Neonatology Department. Having just completed a paediatric rotation in Australia, he thought he would be able to immerse himself quite quickly, but soon realised this would not be the case. 

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  • Cassandra Collyer - Tanzania

    Cassandra was welcomed by locals into a culture of happiness and love in Muheza, Tanzania. In the St Augustine’s Hospital, however, she entered into a new world full of challenges and death, where patients would often need to bring their own bed sheets and cleaning supplies. Here, Cassandra was challenged to think quickly, critically and resourcefully in the face of limited resources. Tea light candles were repurposed to help culture anaerobic bacterial, while empty water bottles became a handy way to administer asthma medication.

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  • Katherine Rimmer - Tanzania

    On the outskirts of Arusha, Tanzania, Katherine undertook her clinical placement at two sister hospitals: the Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre and the Selian Lutheran Hospital. Here, she worked in the Paediatric Wards, Surgical Wards and Neonatal Intensive Units, which proved to be a rewarding and challenging experience. In a heart-warming full circle, Katherine found she had immersed herself into a community that gave back on a simple – yet special – walk home each day.

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  • Patrick Cook - Zambia

    In early 2019, full of excitement and anticipation, Patrick headed to Livingstone Central Hospital in Livingstone, Zambia to undertake his elective placement. He was quickly faced with the reality of overwhelming health inequality, when the resuscitation of a newborn tragically ceased due to the unavailability of a functioning ventilator. Fortunately, his time in Zambia wasn’t all ‘doom and gloom’, with Patrick immersing himself in the delivery of healthy babies on the labour ward, and outside of the hospital taking in the breathtaking views of Victoria Falls.

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Australia

  • Nicola Jacobs - Alice Springs

    For her elective placement, Nicola travelled to the heart of Australia: Alice Springs. Working in the Paediatrics Department of the Alice Springs Hospital exposed Nicola to an array of paediatric conditions and the reality of Aboriginal Australian health. Learning to “go with the flow” and step outside her comfort zone, Nicola strengthened her ambition to become a paediatrician and discovered a passion for the Northern Territory.

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  • Kiri Gates - Remote Western Australia

    Kiri, MIGA’s Indigenous Elective Grant recipient in 2018, discovered an appreciation for ophthalmology after completing his elective with Lions Outback Vision – a mobile eye health clinic in regional and remote Western Australia. Kiri helped deliver eye care to Indigenous communities, and expanded his knowledge and skills in a way like no other.

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  • Anne-Maree Nielsen - Torres Strait Islands

    As a recipient of our Indigenous Elective Grant in 2015, Anne-Maree undertook her elective at the Torres and Cape Hospital and Health Service in the Torres Strait Islands. Anne-Maree was able to experience a range of acute care scenarios within the hospital, and also get involved in community based healthcare delivery.

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India

  • Sailesh Narsinh - India

    Sailesh completed his elective at the Lady Willingdon Hospital. Located in Manali, India, a beautiful town nestled in the majestic Himalayan mountain ranges, it is the only hospital providing healthcare to a population of 30,000 people in the surrounding remote villages.

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Pacific Islands

  • Emily Rayers - Papua New Guinea

    Kiunga Hospital in the Western Province of Papua New Guinea was the destination for Emily’s elective in 2017. During her time there, Emily discovered a well-buried desire to be more surgically minded, as she was told stories of doctors performing surgeries for the first time using a step-by-step textbook guide read aloud by a healthcare worker.

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  • Aiden Varan - Samoa

    Apia, home to beautiful beaches and lush mountains, was the destination of Aiden’s early 2019 placement. At Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital (TTMH) Aiden discovered a committed workforce who often worked 18 hour shifts, and, on account of sporadic supplies, demonstrated creative resourcefulness in their practice. During his time there, he also conducted a retrospective audit of paediatric sepsis clinical encounters, following staff identifying sepsis as a common and significant issue.  The project encouraged reciprocal learning between teams, and once his research analysis is complete, Aiden hopes to develop evidence-based recommendations to expedite sepsis recognition and initial management at TTMH.

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  • Amelia Bai - Solomon Islands

    While on her elective placement in the Solomon Islands, Amelia’s eyes were opened to the harsh reality of the under-resourced Gizo Hospital. Saying goodbye to gauze, betadine and critical pathology tests, Amelia found the opportunity to rely on and strengthen her medical skills. Outside of the hospital, the discoveries continued. Immersing herself into a culture full of “thonglets”, motorboat Ubers and local footy, Amelia’s inner adventure bug came to life.

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  • Lucy Mitchell - Solomon Islands

    In early 2018 Lucy travelled to Gizo in the Solomon Islands to undertake her elective at the Gizo Hospital. Located in the Western Province, the Hospital is the second largest in the country and receives many patients who have travelled from surrounding islands, often presenting in advanced stages of disease. Lucy's experience was full of breathtaking highlights, but also the challenges that take place within a low resource healthcare setting.

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  • Ryan Avery - Solomon Islands

    Ryan undertook his final year elective at the KiraKira Hospital, in the Makira-Ulawa Province of the Solomon Islands. KiraKira Hospital provides care to approximately 40,000 people on the island, who often walk distances of 30 to 40 kilometres just to reach the hospital.

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  • Elizabeth Forrest - Vanuatu

    As part of Elizabeth’s fourth year elective, she spent seven weeks at Vanuatu’s Vila Central Hospital. Arriving in the country three months following the devastating destruction of Tropical Cyclone Pam, the country was still in a declared state of emergency. The lack of resources was extremely evident, with no CT or MRI scanner, limited pathology and drugs available, no chemotherapy and no laparoscopic surgery. The doctors did their best with what they had available, sometimes relying on clinical signs alone to diagnose a condition.

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South America & Caribbean

  • Rebecca Moss - Ecuador

    Cachamsi Medical Spanish Institute is a not-for-profit organisation based in Riobamba, a city of 200,000 people, and was the location of Rebecca’s elective in 2015. Despite Ecuador’s Constitution stating a universal right to healthcare, reports estimate only 50% of the population can actually access these free services, and even less in rural areas where extreme poverty, malnutrition and dirty water continue to plague communities.

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  • Adarsh Das - Grenada

    Adarsh was based at a hospital called St Augustine Medical Services (SAMS), located in the cool hills of St Paul’s, 10 minutes away from St George’s.  Despite its relatively small size (12 beds), SAMS offers comprehensive care for over 16 areas of clinical services and caters for medical, surgical, maternity and emergency admissions. While on his elective, Adarsh was supervised by Dr Amechi, who took Adarsh under his wing and exposed him to the wide range of medicine that Grenada has to offer.

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  • Samara McNeil - Peru

    Report coming soon!

Southeast Asia

  • Hayden Burch - Cambodia

    While on elective in Cambodia, Hayden was given the opportunity to spend two weeks at the Preah Kossamak Hospital in Phnom Penh and one week at the Sla Health Centre in rural Cambodia. He found the opportunity to learn, engage and strengthen his understanding of health and disease on an individual and global level a unique privilege.

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  • Matthew Pipe - Cambodia

    Matthew, a recipient of our Indigenous Elective Grant in 2016, travelled to the World Mate Emergency Hospital in Battambang, Cambodia to complete an eight week elective. Although the differences between healthcare in Australia and Cambodia were staggering to Matthew, he was amazed by the excellent care, treatment and follow-up the staff provided in aiming to achieve the best possible outcome for each patient.

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  • Stuart Brown - Nepal

    Nepal is home of the majestic Himalayas, and also served as Stuart’s home for two months while he undertook his elective at the Kaski Sewa Hospital and Research Centre in Pokhara. In just four weeks, Stuart was exposed to a wide variety of medical conditions, ranging from common ischaemic heart disease and chronic obstructive airways disease, to more exotic, infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, leprosy, malaria, schistosomiasis and amoebic liver abscess.

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  • Susanne Kitching - Nepal

    Susanne completed a six week elective at Manipal Teaching Hospital in Pokhara, Nepal. With a focus on obstetrics and paediatrics, she had the opportunity to work in women’s and children’s healthcare in a community still recovering from the devastating 2015 earthquakes. Here, Susanne helped upskill the existing doctors so that improvement in patient care could be more sustainable.

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  • Aileen Foale - Thailand

    Report coming soon!
  • Mariana Rego - Timor-Leste

    Mariana completed her final elective at the Bairo Pite Clinic in Timor-Leste. While only a one hour flight from Australia, Mariana found the disparity in resources between the two countries absolutely astounding and upsetting.

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