Medical Projects - Overseas Hospital Work Experience - Sri Lanka

Overseas Hospital Work

Experience Course

Galle, Sri Lanka

Course Overview

Based in the city of Galle, you can obtain overseas hospital work experience in the Sri Lankan healthcare system while you explore this beautiful, historic city on the Southwest Coast.

Our main partner hospital in Galle is a government hospital with nearly 1600 beds! The public hospital provides free healthcare for Sri Lankan citizens and is one of the busiest teaching hospitals in the south of the Island. Students will spend time in a number of different departments, including an emergency treatment unit, maternity ward and paediatrics unit. We also work with two private hospitals – very popular with Sri Lanka’s growing middle class. Students will have the chance to experience both types of hospital, providing an invaluable insight into the Sri Lankan healthcare system.

Our students are accompanied to the hospitals each day by our local team, where they will be assigned to a doctor to shadow for the day. Students complete 25 hours of overseas hospital work experience per week and are rotated between different departments each day, to ensure they experience as many medical cases as possible and gain an understanding of how a hospital functions. All our medical mentors are experienced teachers and speak English.

This Course Is Suitable For

This course is for students aged 16+ looking for overseas hospital work experience combined with an inspiring cultural journey. We accept students interested in pre-medicine, pre-midwifery, pre-nursing and pre-dentistry, and we can tailor the course to each student’s individual career aspirations. Students of any nationality are welcome to join us. 

This Course Includes

✓ A minimum of 25 hours hospital-based work experience per week

✓ Shadowing experienced Consultants, Doctors and Healthcare Professionals

✓ Weekly language classes

✓ Mock multiple mini interviews (MMIs) conducted by experienced interviewers with feedback

✓ A minimum of one day volunteering in the local community

✓ Animal conservation and welfare volunteer opportunities 

✓ 24/7 Staff from UK office on project with students

✓ Accommodation, breakfast and dinner

Maximum number of student per week

Average daily temperature in celsius

Number of beds in partner hospitals

Years worked in turtle conservation at our partner sanctuary

Course Learning Outcomes


Gain medical work experience required for the UCAS application

Develop an in-depth knowledge of the role of a Doctor, Nurse, Midwife or Dentist

Gain insight into a different country’s healthcare system

Spend time in public and private hospital’s different healthcare settings including clinics, wards and surgical theatres

Learn about the differences between public and private hospitals and those who access the two

Gain an appreciation of a different culture and country

Learn some basic local language phrases and put them into practice for day-to-day tasks

Spend at least one day volunteering

See the impact humans are having on local wildlife and natural habitats

Visit and clean remote beaches which act as safe egg laying places for some of Sri Lanka’s wild turtles

Read our 2019/2020 Prospectus

Course Timetable

Sunday (Arrival)

Students arriving into Colombo Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB) are met by a member of the Medical Projects team. After journeying to our base in Galle, students take part in a welcome induction and have a group dinner. 

Monday (AM)

Monday morning is our first day at the hospital. Students travel by minibus from our accommodation and are split into pairs to meet their Doctors. The morning is spent shadowing across their departments before finishing for lunch at around 1:30pm. 

Monday (PM)

It is time to head to town for lunch, and have a local town orientation. Starting in Galle Fort – a 16th Century Dutch fort and UNESCO World Heritage Site, now filled with shops and cafes – our staff will show students where to find all the essentials they will need during the week, including banks, lunch spots, and souvenir markets.

Tuesday (AM)

We are back in the hospital this morning – this time, in a new department. Students will rotate between different departments during their trip, so today could be the emergency treatment unit (ETU), similar to an Accident and Emergency department in the UK.

Tuesday (PM)

After finishing at the hospital, students head back into town to grab some lunch at a local restaurant, before heading back to the accommodation to relax by the pool ahead of a cookery lesson from our resident chef; who will teach students how to make some delicious authentic Sri Lankan curries!

Wednesday (AM)

It’s time to shadow again this morning, perhaps in the paediatric department, which cares for any children who need to be admitted for inpatient care. The department sees a wide range of cases including tropical diseases like dengue fever, or even cases as unusual as snake bites!

Wednesday (PM)

Students grab a quick lunch today, before heading out for a trip to a nearby Buddhist temple to learn about Sri Lanka’s most prominent religion. Then, it is back to the house in time for mock MMIs. Students will rotate around a number of stations, before receiving some feedback on how to improve their answers.

Thursday (AM)

Today is a volunteering day for some of our students, who will head north up the coast, to the town of Kosgoda. Here, they will visit our partner turtle sanctuary, which collects turtle eggs to stop them being eaten by predators or dug up by fishermen and provides a safe place for them to hatch. Students will spend the morning helping to clean the beach and fetching sea water for the tanks.

Thursday (PM)

After lunch near the sanctuary, some lucky students will have the chance to release some of the 3 day old male turtles! Taking place inbetween late afternoon and early evening to keep them safe from predators, the turtles are released onto the beach and make their way down to the ocean. Students then head back home for an evening of relaxation.

Friday (AM)

Today is the last day at the hospital this week, and it’s time to shadow a doctor in the Maternity Unit. The unit contains an antenatal clinic, labour rooms, and postnatal wards. Students could be in any of these areas depending on patient numbers and if they are lucky, they may even see a birth or a c-section! Gestational diabetes is also a common reason for admissions here.

Friday (PM)

Friday afternoon is free time, where students can take part in a number of activities, including a local rainforest walk and tree planting experience. Then, the whole group heads to a restaurant in Galle Fort for dinner, and to say goodbye to any departing students.

Saturday (AM)

Students who are departing this weekend pack up their belongings and get ready for the journey home. Those staying for the weekend can head off on our weekend trip today. It is an early start to get over to the Udawalawe National Park, in time to do a game drive and spot some wild elephants!

Saturday (PM)

The majority of the afternoon is spent at the national park, spotting animals like elephants, wild boar, water buffalo and occasionally, even the elusive leopard. Then, the group heads to a nearby hotel for dinner and some time relaxing.


Students on the weekend trip have breakfast in the hotel before heading to Udawalawe Elephant Transit Home, one of the few elephant sanctuaries in Sri Lanka supported by the Born Free Foundation for its high care standards. Then, it is time to head back to Galle, arriving back in time for a welcome dinner with the new arrivals!

Following Week

On Monday morning, our week starts again and we head back to the hospital to spend time shadowing. Students will spend the week rotating through hospital departments to ensure they see as many different areas of medicine as possible. 

Please note, the above timetable is an example of a typical Project Sri Lanka week. Depending on hospital availability, Doctor schedules and public holidays this is subject to change.


We hire private accommodation for all of our students and staff. The accommodation is only a 10-minute drive to the hospitals and 15 minutes by tuk-tuk to the town centre. The house features large gardens and a private swimming pool; so you can make the most of the tropical weather!

Students will stay in twin or triple rooms, with Western style bathrooms. Our staff also stay at the same accommodation and we always have a female member of staff on duty at night. Breakfast and dinner is included each day, with a mix of Sri Lankan food and Western meals.



All students are met on arrival at Colombo Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB) by a member of the Medical Projects team. All in-country transport is provided using our tried and tested transport partners and drivers. Students are accompanied back to Colombo airport at the end of their trip. 

Food & Drink

A continental breakfast is provided each morning at the accommodation before heading to the hospital. The food provided may vary from day to day but generally, students can expect to have toast, fruit, eggs, tea, and coffee provided. 

Lunch is usually taken at a local cafe or restaurant in the town centre. Alternatively, students can visit the nearby supermarkets to buy food. 

Dinner is provided each evening at the accommodation, except for one night a week where we visit a local restaurant. The food is a mixture of Sri Lankan curries, and rice dishes, with occasional Western food included. There is always a vegetarian option available. 

Pastoral Care

Our staff are on hand at the hospital whenever there are students present, to ensure that all students are with their doctors and getting the most out of their placement. 

We always have a minimum of one member of staff staying in the same accommodation as students, and at least one female member of staff on duty overnight. 

Students are accompanied by staff during their weekend trip, transport, and afternoon activities, unless explicit parental permission has been given for unaccompanied free time activities. 


Course Gallery

Extra-Curricular Activities

Although delivering an amazing learning experience is our main focus, we also understand students want to socialise and explore with their free time. Our team have a variety of optional excursions and socials available, to ensure students make the most of their time in Sri Lanka. During free time, students can opt to do a tour of Galle Fort, take part in rainforest hikes or boat safaris, and visit local temples, markets, and beaches.


One day per week, each student takes part in some local volunteering projects to give something back to the local community. Our students visit our partner turtle sanctuary, where they help to care for the turtles by cleaning tanks, fetching sea water for the tanks, prepare food for the turtles, and may even have the chance to release newborns back into the ocean. Our students often also help to keep Kosgoda beach clean and unspoiled, by collecting any plastic waste or garbage which might have washed up. 

Weekend Trips

Students staying for two weeks or more have the opportunity to take part in a weekend trip to Udawalawe National Park. Udawalawe is home to large populations of water birds and wild elephants. Students will take part in wildlife drives to spot some of the native animals, including elephants, water buffalo, deer, wild boar, and small populations of leopards. Students will then spend the night at a hotel near the park, before visiting Udawalawe Elephant Transit Home the following morning. The home is one of only sanctuaries in Sri Lanka supported by the world-famous Born Free Foundation, due to the high quality of care the animals receive. Here, students can view the elephants and see how they are so carefully looked after.  


7 Reasons To Join This Course


Shadow experienced Healthcare Professionals


Gain essential work experience


Obtain genuine insight


Perfect your interview technique


Volunteer in wildlife conservation


Experience a new culture


Make friends from all over the world

Course Fees

Registration fee for all courses is £300. Then the following balance payments are due 90 days before you join us. 

1 Week – £800

2 Weeks – £1300

3 Weeks – £1800

4 Weeks – £2300

Course Dates

12th July – 18th July 2020

19th July – 25th July 2020

26th July – 1st August 2020

2nd August – 8th August 2020

Not Included

1. Flights

2. Lunch money (around £5 per day)

3. Visa (around £50 if required)

4. Spending money (approximately £80 per week)

5. Travel Insurance

Ready to join us?

Great! Simply follow the link below, fill in our application form and secure your place!