The Complete Medical Spanish Immersion Course

We are serious about medical Spanish

Our medical Spanish immersion program in Peru is the fastest way to learn and improve medical Spanish skills.  Every aspect of the program is focused on language development.  For example, the course is taught by both language teachers and doctors.

Classes take place at our well-equipped school in the charming area La Merced, in the colonial city of Trujillo.  Less than 10 minutes walk from each of our student homestay families.

For 4 or 7 hours per day, you will take language classes covering general grammar, vocabulary, and conversation as well as health care Spanish.

Learning begins before you arrive

Your Spanish program begins long before you get to Peru.   We will send you a great medical Spanish book and also online general and medical Spanish vocabulary lists to review anytime on your phone or tablet.

Language vocabulary can be learned anywhere, at any time.   By giving you a headstart with vocabulary before you arrive, our teachers can focus on developing grammar and language practice.

This medical Spanish immersion course is one of few overseas programs awarded CME accreditation with AAFP.

So what is medical Spanish?

Medical Spanish is a lot more than a long list of vocabulary covering medical terminology and instructions.  To learn, and more importantly, to use medical Spanish with patients, you need to also understand general Spanish grammar.  Having Spanish grammar means that you will be able to really communicate in a healthcare environment and beyond.

For us, the importance of general Spanish means that we devote around 60% of our teaching time to general Spanish and 40% pure medical Spanish.  It is this combination that enables us to help students learn real medical Spanish comprehensively and quickly.

This focus on both medical and general Spanish is what sets our programs apart

Medical Spanish Course

The medical Spanish course takes place in the afternoons.  Each day you will take 4 hours of the program developing both your general Spanish and medical Spanish skills.

The course is taught at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels.  Our team of language teachers in Trujillo rotate classes.  This means each hour you will have a different teacher ensuring that the classes are always fun and stimulating.

Each hour is different

Each day the language course begins in the garden area with a one-hour conversation club where you will practice speaking and listening skills in a group with one of our teachers.

Participants then break into classroom groups where they take classes focused on grammar, vocabulary and pure medical Spanish.  The program is designed in one-hour modules.   Lessons are relaxed and fun with teachers using a variety of learning tools including role plays, games, and videos.  Progress is measured with bi-weekly exams.

The grammar and vocabulary modules are taught by experienced professional language teachers.  The pure medical Spanish element of the program is taught by healthcare professionals, who cover the most important areas of medical Spanish (See below for further details of the topics covered).

Having medical doctors teach this part of our program is unique, allowing participants to cover areas of medicine in detail and practice realistic patient role plays.

For those looking to advance as quickly as possible with their Spanish skills, we also offer our intensive medical Spanish program.  This is 7 hours per day of Spanish classes.

The program has been awarded CME accreditation by The American Academy of Family Physicians 

Where possible, we ask that participants begin their medical Spanish program on the first Monday of their chosen month.  However, you can begin on any Monday.

Specific medical Spanish course topics include:

  • Clinical history
  • Medical instruments
  • Parts of the body
  • In the hospital
  • Typical illnesses in Peru
  • Examination of the lungs
  • Gastroenteritis
  • Surgical instruments
  • Arthritis
  • Health care occupations and roles
  • Physical examination
  • In the consulting room
  • Food and nutrition
  • Describing treatments
  • Examination of the heart
  • Cancer: Prevention and treatment
  • Hepatitis
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Human organs
  • Administering medications
  • Common illnesses
  • Peruvian Health care system
  • Type of pain
  • Chest infections and tubercolosis
  • Cholesterol, triglycerides & hypertension
  • Resistance to antibiotics
  • Arthritis

Please let us know whether you would like any additional health care topics to be included in your particular medical Spanish course. Should you have any specific interest that is not covered above; our team will develop the course material you need.

Using Spanish on your Clinical Rotation

Taking a medical elective in Peru not only provides you with an unforgettable experience learning about how healthcare is provided abroad but also is the place to put your growing medical Spanish vocabulary into practice.  It is not possible to always replicate this medical Spanish immersion in the classroom.

Using Spanish in a hospital in Peru is a truly satisfying experience, and one to put you in good stead when working with Spanish speaking patients in your home country.

Activities in Spanish

Each week, as part of the medical Spanish course, we include activities such as the preparation of traditional food, cocktail making or salsa classes. These activities are a fun way to practice your Spanish whilst learning something new.

Each month our language teachers will also take you on a guided tour of the historic center of Trujillo and the fascinating archaeological site, Huacas del Sol y de la Luna.

For all participants, we also include the choice of gym membership or dance classes.  These activities take place at organizations outside of The Medical Elective Network and provide another opportunity to practice Spanish in a different environment

Community Health Fairs

Several times per month we partner with local authorities, the  Peruvian National Police, or prison service in Trujillo, providing community health fairs for those with limited resources.  Healthcare consultations and medicine are provided by us at no cost to patients.

As well as being an opportunity to make a positive contribution to under-resourced communities, these health fairs offer program participants to effectively use the medical Spanish skills they are developing here in the classroom and beyond.

Family accommodation 

The great benefit of staying with a homestay family is the opportunity to live in a Spanish speaking environment. Whilst this may seem challenging at first, it is the ideal way to reinforce your language skills. This is real immersion Spanish and time at home is like taking an extra Spanish course out of the classroom.  We work with a small number of very nice families with comfortable homes and a welcoming environment.


Jon - UK

The Spanish lessons were extremely enjoyable, and much needed as I arrived with only basic Spanish. I initially struggled to communicate with the doctors, but with constant practice and teaching every afternoon I soon improved. The teachers were always enthusiastic, and made sure that every lesson was entertaining.

Alex -USA

Being able to go to the hospital every morning and Spanish class every afternoon during the week plus having a chance to go on numerous weekend trips around the country made my experience in Peru incredibly worthwhile and well-rounded.

Django - Australia

I learnt lots and got along really well with my teachers. They were kind when I made mistakes but always corrected them, encouraged me to learn new words and made the effort to make every class exciting, interesting and challenging. I was amazed by their dedication to us and it was so wonderful to build a friendship with our teachers.

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