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Elective in South Africa

Discussion in 'Medical Electives, Working Abroad and Travelling' started by smile88egc, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. smile88egc

    smile88egc New Member

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    Hi there,
    Just wondering if i can catch any students that have been to SA on there electives recently for some advice?
    I'm in the primary planning stages, but have applied to Stellenbosch uni to do obs&gynae, and paeds at Tygerberg hospital.

    My main worry is my own safety, as although i can hire a car, travelling seems to be quite dangerous still,
    Also, Im not sure whether malaria prophylaxis would be necessary, as although i'd be staying mainly in capetown, who knows where i might want to travel when i get there?! I'd take it anyway, but i've heard it's not very pleasant.
    Has anyone done any particularly fantastic things whilst in SA? I'm hoping to do scuba and shark dives, but i'd like a gopod variety of activities :)

    Thanks in advance for any help :)
     
  2. auden

    auden New Member

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    Hia Emma,

    just got back from 10 weeks in paeds at Kalafong Hospital, Pretoria - happy to answer any questions. I rented a car for commuting and it was fine, you have to be sensible and there is always a chance you'll get mugged but it's mainly a case of keeping your wits about you (and your doors locked at all times!!).

    You won't need malaria prophylaxis in the Cape but you will if you wanna go to Kruger park - though that would be a long way from Cape Town and there are closer non-malarial Big Five game parks. Otherwise most of the stuff you're likely to want to do is non-malarial.

    When are you planning on going? Sea-based activities in the Cape will need to be in summer (Nov to Mar) as the water is cold out of season! Would recommend going on safari if you can get the time, there are some good companies I know for Kruger, not sure about other parks.

    pm me if you want more. The clinical experience is pretty excellent too - I learnt masses and got to do a lot of practical procedures. My confidence came on leaps and bounds.
     
  3. smile88egc

    smile88egc New Member

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    The safari thing sounds awesome, i will deffinately look into it. I'm going to be there between August and October so hopefully the sea won't be too cold! Anything warmer than we get here and I'd be happy!
    Can I ask what made you choose the hospital you went for?
    I've been told i should apply to a couple of places to guarentee the specialties I want, so what made you pick Pretoria, and what about the hospital did you like and dislike?
    Thanks again :)
     
  4. jane09

    jane09 New Member

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    Hi ,
    Just wondering if anyone else had any elective experiences in South Africa to share - i'm thinking of going but would be as a female on my own so wondered if anyone else had done this and found it to be safe. Is renting a car really necessary? I'm a terrible driver...!
    Has anyone done any psychiatry out there at all? I was thinking of Groote Schur maybe.
    thanks in advance....
     
  5. dapthegreat

    dapthegreat New Member

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    Hi Emma & Jane09,

    I spent my 5 week elective period in South Africa over the summer - Johannesburg General Hospital, plastic surgery. It was fantastic and I highly recommend SA.

    I spent the first week in Cape Town 'travelling' and did all the major attractions - Table Mountain, Cape of Good Hope, Great White shark diving, Long Street etc. - the nightlife is amazing, the people are incredibly friendly and very fond of the English.

    Arriving into Cape Town initially was abit daunting (my first time out of Europe) and you are greeted with the Cape Flats after driving a short distance from the airport - we used the shuttle service our hostel offered from the airport.

    I actually spent my 21st birthday in Stellenbosch and its fantastic, the town is basically built around the university and bars/nightclubs, its really studenty and everyones extremely welcoming (we were invited to Stellenbosch by a South African girl we met on the way down to shark diving).

    With regards to safety, everything was fine in Cape Town (and somehow in Johannesburg...). We went out every night we were there, returning to our hostel in the early hours and we had no trouble. Cape Town tends to have more opportunistic crime (as opposed to Joburg which is extremely violent), so just take similar precautions like you would over here.

    We enjoyed Cape Town and Stellenbosch so much that we actually flew back down to Cape Town from Johannesburg at the end of our four week placement and spent two more nights there. We then hired a car and drove from Cape Town to Stellenbosch for one more night out. Driving around was extremely easy and car hire was incredibly cheap, although make sure you take a credit card as most car hire places will ask for one.

    You won't need malaria prophylaxis if you are staying in Cape Town. We however travelled up through Botswana, Zambia, Malawi and Tanzania so required it for a couple of the countries. If you can travel after, again I would highly recommend it - we safari/camped out in the Okavango Delta, went white water rafting and bungee jumping at Vic falls, did our PADI SCUBA qualification in Lake Malawi and went to the beach parties in Zanzibar. I'm not sure about the SCUBA diving in Cape Town...as it is home of the great white, however I could be wrong. Climb Lion's Head (next to Table Mountain), one of the best things we did and it cost us nothing.

    Going alone as a female is fine, its extremely easy to meet locals/other travellers. Four of us went from my medical school to Johannesburg (Liverpool), one of whom was female and she spent the first week their alone. She was ok, however Johannesburg is nothing like Cape Town (and certainly nothing like Stellenbosch) and was incredibly dangerous, we were pretty much living in fear. That said, it was still an amazing four weeks, both academically and socially.

    If you want to know anything else please fire away,

    David
     
  6. clewi5

    clewi5 New Member

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    elective placement in sa

    Hi David,

    I was just reading about your elective in SA and it sounded really great. I'm in the process of organising mine for the summer and was wondering if you could help me with contacts for hospitals etc? I was interested in SA and saw a blog about Stellenbosch hospital too which sounds good.

    Christie
     
  7. dapthegreat

    dapthegreat New Member

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    Hey Christie,

    Yeah it was awesome, you should really consider going there! Yeah which contacts were you after - do you want the Johannesburg ones? I know a few other students who went to Cape Town and Stellenbosch also, and I visited both (although not for placements). Do you know what specialty you want to do? PM me if you prefer.

    David
     
  8. smile88egc

    smile88egc New Member

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    I can help you out with Stellenbosch as I've just arranged my elective there for the summer. They have a really helpful electives co'ordinator called Mariska April, if you email her at maa@sun.ac.za then she'll send you loads of forms to fill in to apply and you should hear back in a couple of weeks, its brilliant! And you can then apply for accomodation on campus too which is nice and cheap, and living with other international students.

    I'm off to to paeds for 8 weeks starting mid august, when were you planning on going?

    Emma
     
  9. clewi5

    clewi5 New Member

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    Hi Emma,

    Thanks so much for the contact, the lady was really helpful. Unfortunately they are fully booked in the areas I'm hoping for. I'm planning on going in July, hoping to do paeds and obs and gynae.

    Christie
     
  10. ijloveslife

    ijloveslife New Member

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    Hi, im going to stellenbosch in July for Obgyn.... anyone else going that time. im going end of July.
     
  11. Nahida salim abdillahi

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    Hiii guys,am Nahida from kenya,a 5th year medical student.Am plannin to have my electives in South Africa starting in september 2016!wondering if i can catch any student/s who have been to South Africa recently?Got some burning questions i need to ask...Thanks!
     
  12. Cheema1313

    Cheema1313 New Member

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    Hi
    I am a final year student from pakistan. Can any ody guide me how to apply for elective in south africa. I am planning to apply it at wits university? Can anybody guide me?
     
  13. Martigan

    Martigan Super Moderator

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    Have you had a look at electives.net?
     
  14. Gloria1

    Gloria1 New Member

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    Hi
    I am Gloria from Congo and I'm a final year medical student in China. Can anybody guide me how to apply for elective in south africa. I am planning to apply it at wits university? Can anybody guide me?
     

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