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Elective Competition Winner 2017

By Kerry Bramley

Elective Competition Winner 2017


Meet Kerry Bramley, a medical student and one of the winners of our Wesleyan Elective Competition 2017.  Here she shares with us her elective experience in Malawi and the UK. 

My Medical Elective Journey

Hi, I'm Kerry, a final year medical student from Keele and I'll be commencing my 8-week medical elective! I'll be spending 4 weeks in Malawi and 4 weeks with the Essex and Hertfordshire Air Ambulance.

Aside from wanting to spend some time working in a developing country, to enable me to experience the healthcare challenges that are faced, I wasn't too sure what I wanted to do for my elective or where I wanted to go. Whilst researching elective placements, I came across an organisation called World Medical Fund. Kerry-Bramley

After reading previous student's positive experiences and visiting their website, I decided to book my placement. The medical team and volunteers travel to rural villages to run clinics and provide treatment to children that would otherwise have no access to healthcare.

They also run HIV clinics, and perform surgery in the back of an army truck that has been converted into a surgical theatre.

I'm really looking forward to helping out with the clinics. I'm told that I will be taught some basic Chichewa (the language spoken by the locals) to help me to communicate with the patients and determine a likely diagnosis.

I'm hoping that the placement will encourage me to make better use of my clinical and diagnostic skills, due to the lack of access to tests and investigations such as imaging for example.

Furthermore, I'm anticipating seeing a wide variety of pathology including infectious diseases such as malaria, HIV and parasitic infections, which I have had very little exposure to during my 3 years of clinical placements in the UK.

Throughout medical school, I've developed an interest in Emergency Medicine and Anaesthetics and was lucky enough to spend SSC placements in both of these specialties during my medical student training.

However, I was keen to use part of my final year elective to gain exposure to Pre-Hospital and Retrieval Medicine, in order to explore this career further. Although the majority of the work will be as an observer, I expect I will get to see a wide variety of emergency and trauma patients and how these are managed in a Pre-Hospital setting.

I've never been on a helicopter before, so hope that I don't get motion sickness!

If you're interested in finding out how my placements go, keep an eye out for my update posts and photographs!

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