Intended for healthcare professionals

Student Life

Desperately seeking asylum

BMJ 2001; 323 doi: (Published 01 November 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;323:0111430
  1. Andrew Moscrop, Clegg scholar, BMJ, and final year medical student1
  1. 1Edinburgh University

Andrew Moscrop talks to Russian asylum seeker Ann Brodski who is struggling to stay in Britain and pursue her medical studies

Securing a place to study medicine is rarely easy. For a young Russian who is currently seeking asylum in Britain, the process is especially challenging. Ann Brodski explains, “My struggle for education has been made much more difficult by the need to struggle for the right to stay in the UK.”

Seeking asylum

Ann fled from Russia with her family in 1997 after suffering years of harassment because of their Jewish ancestry. With the money gained from the sale of their Moscow flat and with their possessions stuffed into suitcases, the Brodski family arrived in London. They applied to the Home Office for refugee status and joined the list of over 32 000 who made similar applications that year. “It was a very difficult time,” Ann recalls, “but things had been worse in Russia. Besides, we had to remain optimistic or else we wouldn't have survived.” Refugee status and …

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