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Katherine Galliano - Think Beyond Borders

Katherine Galliano - Think Beyond Borders

Medical professionals seeking opportunities to enhance their careers abroad might consider vacancies in developing countries. Katherine Galliano of Doctors Without Borders (MSF) talked about alternatives available to doctors who willing to work abroad.

What is required of European trained medical-professionals, other than two years’ experience in their speciality, in order to qualify for a mission with MSF?

Katherine Galliano: All our recruits for overseas work need to meet our basic requirements. These can be found on our website. We are looking to recruit professionals interested in a medium to long term career with MSF, the minimum availability should be 9-12 months, although some specialists such as surgeons need only be available for 6-8 weeks at a time. Other basic requirements include the ability to live and work in a multicultural team, the ability to cope with stress, flexibility and some experience of independent travel or working in a developing country. Each profession then has to meet the requirements for his or her profession. Details can be found on our website where we have a list of professions that we recruit,

What other criteria would medical professionals need to fulfil?

English is the language used at MSF, but we desperately need fluent French speakers to work in French speaking countries such as Central African Republic and Haiti where we have medical programmes. Recruits need to be registered with the professional body in the country where they are recruited. In the UK they are with the General Medical Council and the Nursing and Midwifery Council. There are 42 recruitment offices situated in: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Norway, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, UK and US. All candidates need be able to travel to one of the above countries where MSF has an office in order to have a face to face interview.

What benefits to one's personal and career development can be expected from experience with MSF?

Working with MSF is extremely challenging but also immensely rewarding personally and professionally. Not only do our field staff learn about themselves and others, they also experience a new culture and most importantly, help to realise a vital purpose — assuring access to essential medical and humanitarian aid to populations in danger. Both clinical and technical skills learnt whilst overseas are always valuable when our international staff return home to their careers, as are the soft skills they develop.

What other staff does the MSF recruit?

We recruit nurses, midwives, epidemiologists, biomedical scientists as well as non-medical staff. More information is in the working overseas section of our website.

Médecins Sans Frontieres profile

Médecins Sans Frontieres MSF (Doctors Without Borders) is an independent international medical humanitarian organisation that delivers emergency aid in more than 60 countries to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural or man-made disasters or exclusion from healthcare. In emergencies and their aftermath, MSF rehabilitates and runs hospitals and clinics, performs surgery, battles epidemics, carries out vaccination campaigns, operates feeding centres for malnourished children and offers mental healthcare.

Katherine Galliano

Head of Human Resources
MSF UK (Doctors Without Borders)
MSF Médecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) is an independent international medical humanitarian organization that provides medical assistance to people suffering from armed conflict, epidemics, natural disasters or man-made or excluded from medical care in over 60 countries.