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Great elective experience
  • Alison Curran reviewed 4 years ago
  • last edited 4 years ago

I spent my six week elective at Mulanje Mission Hospital (MMH) as part of my fifth year of study at The University of Nottingham medical school and had a brilliant time. MMH is a 200 bed district hospital, that serves a population of 550, 000 from a fairly poor, rural area of Malawi. My timetable was arranged so that I could get experience in each of the specialities (paediatrics, maternity, general medical and surgical and community). I was able to tailor the timetable so that I spent more time in the areas I was particularly interested in.

A typical day at the hospital involved handover at 7.15am (where all the clinical officers, doctors and nurses meet to discuss new admissions), morning ward round, seeing new admissions in the afternoon and afternoon handover at 3.30pm. I spent most of my time shadowing Malawian Clinical Officers and doctors, and felt very well supported. I learned a lot about tropical medicine, particularly malaria which is very prevalent, and also got the opportunity to learn some new skills (eg pleural tap, ascitic drain, debridement of ulcers). I also saw many advanced clinical signs that I have never seen in the UK eg massive hepatosplenomegaly, paper white conjunctiva and lots of weird and wonderful X-rays!

I stayed at the guesthouse with two other medical students, situated just off the hospital grounds. The guest house is built for six people and is equipped with a kitchen where you can cook for yourself. It is relatively basic (bucket showers!) but nice. There is a local market just down the road, and a few larger shops in town (10 minute bicycle taxi ride away). To stock up on food and supplies, it is easy to catch a lift with someone from the hospital, into the bigger town Blantyre at the weekends.

Mulanje is a great location for elective, right next to Mulanje mountain which you can explore at the weekend. Malawi is a beautiful country and there’s lots to do, including Majete and Liwonde safari parks, Zomba plateau and Lake Malawi.

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flame tree in maternity courtyard.jpeg 4 years ago
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