Support and indemnity for electives

Wherever your elective takes you, you can rely on our support. As a student member, you get free indemnity for your elective and advice if you encounter problems from your clinical practice during your elective.

Need to contact us for urgent advice while on your elective? Call our medico-legal helpline on 0800 716 646 or +44 (0)20 7202 1500.

Get your indemnity certificate

Get your indemnity certificate

Before you go on your elective, it's important to make sure you have adequate indemnity in place. Your elective host may ask you for written confirmation or possibly ask you to pay for professional indemnity.

As a benefit of student membership, we can provide you with free professional indemnity for your clinical practice during your elective.

When you’ve decided on your destination, log in to My membership and complete the elective indemnity form. You can add up to three destinations and download and print your confirmation letter. You can also have it emailed to you, or someone else, or posted to the address we have for you.

Get your certificate

FAQs about electives

How can the MDU help me with my elective?

As a student member you can contact us for help if problems arise from your involvement in the clinical care of patients during your elective. We can also help with indemnity for claims arising from any good Samaritan acts you perform.

If you need help with a medico-legal or ethical issue before or during your elective, you can also call our medico-legal helpline. Our experienced doctors are on hand to respond to queries and offer expert support and guidance.

What advice can you give me before I go on my elective?

We recommend that medical students are supervised by qualified practitioners at all times and are aware of the standards set by the GMC in its core guidance, 'Good medical practice' (2024), which will apply to you as future doctors. This is an extensive list but includes, "recognise and work within the limits of your competence" and maintain professionalism at all times. You may want to refer to these guidelines during your training and especially during your elective when you may take on additional duties.

You may also want to read the BMA's ethics toolkit for electives.

Can I call the MDU medico-legal helpline while I'm on my elective?

Yes. If you need help with a medico-legal or ethical issue during your elective, you can call our medico-legal helpline on 0800 716 646 or +44 (0)20 7202 1500 or email advisory@themdu.com if it's not urgent. Our medico-legal team is available between 8am-6pm, Monday to Friday. Advice is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for medico-legal emergencies or urgent queries.

When should I tell the MDU I'm going on an elective?

Before you go on your elective, please contact our membership team on freephone 0800 716 376 to confirm the details of your elective and the benefits available in the country you're planning to visit.

Is MDU elective indemnity worldwide?

Due to legislation we are unable to offer indemnity for any work undertaken in Australia during your elective. We can, however, provide you with access to our medico-legal advice line and indemnity for good Samaritan acts. We would expect any clinical work undertaken on an elective to be directly supervised by a registered practitioner carrying their own indemnity.

Where can I get my elective indemnity certificate?

When you’ve decided on your destination, log in to My membership and complete the elective indemnity form. You can add up to three destinations and download and print your confirmation letter. You can also have it emailed to you, or someone else, or posted to the address we have for you.

How do I choose where to go?

There are dozens of factors that might influence where you want to go, such as budget or an interest in a particular specialty or country. Ideally an elective combines personal and professional development. Talking with other students and lecturers, browsing through travel brochures or going online may help firm up your ideas.

Wherever you decide, make sure to plan ahead. Some destinations are popular with students from all over the world. It's not unusual for students to apply for up to 30 organisations to do an elective and receive the same number of rejections. But don't give up – expand your search and find back-up options as well. Research remote locations carefully.

Where can I get funding for my elective?

The following organisations are potential sources of elective funding for individuals who meet certain criteria. Enquiries should be made directly for further details.

Want to write for us?

Want to write for us?

Submit your elective story to share your experiences with fellow students. Getting articles published is a useful addition to your e-portfolio and CV.

We're looking for articles and videos about planning and researching your elective, photos from your elective, what you learnt from your experience and advice for other students about to embark on theirs.

If you want to see your work featured on the MDU student hub, send your ideas and contact details to editor@themdu.com or click below.

Share your story