Future Focus: Kyle Green

As a final year medical student from the University of New South Wales, Kyle Green had an eye opening elective at the Makerere University College of Health Sciences, Uganda.

Throughout his elective, Kyle was exposed to a variety of medical presentations and saw firsthand how various societal and cultural contexts influence how healthcare is provided.

Hospital rounds

My medical elective in Kampala, the capital of Uganda, was nothing short of eye-opening. My four week elective was split between obstetrics and gynaecology and infectious diseases. Throughout this experience, I assisted with caesarean deliveries, delivered babies on my own, and worked with an infectious diseases team that was overflowing with patients through the corridors. The doctors taught me how to cope in the absence of familiar equipment and resources with great ingenuity and resourcefulness, showing me how to surgically scrub with a communal bar of soap and warm blood from the fridge with my body for a patient in desperate need of a transfusion. I learnt to appreciate medicine in a resource poor environment where diseases were manifesting in their most sever forms.

Limited resources

Being a part of the management of life-threatening emergencies, such as eclampsia, cryptococcal meningitis, and tetanus, which are uncommon in Australia, was a fantastic opportunity that allowed me to put context and real-world patient scenarios behind my paper-based learning on such topics at University. The lack of equipment (from ECG machines to basic monitoring) gave me the opportunity to practice clinical medicine in its purest form, establish diagnosis without the use of many common tests, and most importantly, appreciate the value of public health and primary prevention. While such techniques are the cornerstone of obstetric care in Australia, for the people of Uganda, this luxury is seldom afforded. 

Meeting the locals

While intense, I did not spend my entire stay in Uganda within the walls of a hospital. I was welcomed by the locals on day excursions to the markets, at traditional dances, and even on a gorilla trek! These opportunities provided me with an understanding of their culture and way of life, making them just as valuable as the clinical exposure.


I was able to hone my skills throughout my elective and familiarise myself with conditions I probably won't encounter in Australia while also getting to experience a way of life vastly different to my own. Only with the generous support of BOQ Specialist's Future Focus Grant was it feasible to travel overseas for this eye-opening chance to see the provision of obstetric care to disadvantaged women and comprehend the limitations imposed by gravely inadequate health services. I hope to travel back to Uganda one day as part of my training!

Developed exclusively for medical and dental students, each year the BOQ Specialist FutureFocus grants provide students with the opportunity to undertake an elective so that their commitment to helping others can be realised. Applications for our FutureFocus grant will open in June 2023. 

You can also access funds to help undertake an overseas placement, with our Student Banking Package.


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