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Du pain, du vin, du fashion

BMJ 2003; 327 doi: (Published 01 September 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:0309340
  1. Mitesh Desai, preregistration house officer1
  1. 1North Manchester General Hospital, Manchester

Great food, wines, fashion, and the best healthcare system in the world. What better reason for Mitesh Desai to undertake an Erasmus exchange in France

Coming from a British medical undergraduate education system--partaking in the occasional ward round, taking a history, and examining the odd patient while constantly getting under the nurses' feet--my arrival in Rennes, France, was nothing less of an utter culture shock. France's health system has been rated by the World Health Organization as the best in the world.1 I went there on an exchange scheme, the European Community Actions Scheme for the Mobilisation of University Students (Erasmus). This scheme enables students from over 30 European countries to study in another of these countries.

A nurse at reception heralded my arrival by going on a frenzied search for the interne (house officer) who took me into the salle des externes (medical students' office). After a quick “bonjour, je m'appelle,” I was offered a quick overview of the ward and a little tour around the office to show me how the documents were filed. After the exchange, I found …

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