Darja Hrachovinova, Kazan

Darja Hrachovinova, SCOPE

Kazaň, July, 2011

Interregional Clinic.Diagnostical Center



Preparations for the trip

Answer here please: To travel toRussiayou have to have Russian visa. I applied for it in Studen-agency, where I bought plane tickets and travel insuarace too. I wait for visa for about 20 days. I didn’t need any special vaccination. 


I flew toRussiaby Russian aerolines – Aeroflot. My flight lasted 3 hours. I had to change to another plane inMoscow. Plane tickets, visa and travel insuarace – that all costed me 15 000 Kč. I bought my plane ticket for about 1 month before I left.

Organisation at the beginning

In March I was in touch with TaMSA, my contact person wrote me e-mail  2 month before my departure.

At the airport I was picked up by my contact person, her friend and her father. My contact person helped me a lot at the beginning of my stay – she showed me the city, public transport, my hospital. TaMSA gave us card for public transport, map of the city, City Guide, Russian-English dictionary, phone numbers and e-mails of all foreigner and Russian students, instructions how to get to the hospital from place where I lived, card with my name to wear it in hospital, sim-card with some money and free calling to another students. This all we got at the meeting  - invitation of all students to Kazan´s university


I stayed in flat of my contact person. The way to the hospital took 1 hour by bus. I had good access to internet – I could use internet in flat, in hospital, at the University.  


I ate at home very often – my contact person´s grandmother cooked very well. I usually had lunch in the hospital cafeteria, I paid about 70 rubles for lunch (40 Kč). There aren´t any different dinning customs.

Clerkship in the hospital/laboratory

I went to the hospital nearly every day. My clerkship started at 9-10 am, I left hospital at about 14:00pm. I spent in hospital 5 hours a day. I was satisfied with quality of my clerkship. My tutor was young doctor, she was finding for us interesting cases. During the clerkship I was taking history and doing neurological examination. I visited also department of CT and MRI


I used Russian and English. To be able to speak Russian is great advantage in hospital and in the city of course too.  Students spoke English well, my tutor too. But not all doctors in hospital speak English. Russian students promised, that they will teach more doctors to speak English fluently.


Kazaňis great city, it is likePrague. There are many culture advantages, several times a week we went to clubs, discos – always with our Russian friends. In the city you can use buses, trolleys, trams, tube, we used taxi very often too. It is much more cheaper than taxi inPrague.

Free time

We had plan for every afternoon, during the weekend we had plan for whole day. We visited museums, monuments of the city, disco and clubs, we had movie nights and International party. During the weekend we traveled by bus to faraway places. Every afternoon we were together with all foreign and Russian students.

Evaluation of the local IFMSA bureau (1 = best, 5 = worst)

2 – they wanted to make our stay inKazaňunforgettable. They prepared for me and for my friend fromSpainbirthday celebration :-)


During the weekend we traveled by bus to faraway places. Travelling by bus was free for us, the entrances to monuments were quite cheap. Some students visited alsoMoscowandSt. Petersburgduring the stay inKazaň. This journey was very expensive.


InRussiaare prices the same like in our country, that means it is cheaper inRussia.Kazaňis capital city ofTatarstán, prices in the center of the city are a bit higher.

The worst experience

I didn’t like the long distance to hospital. I didn’t know, that it can be in Kazaň30-35°Cevery day. Because of the weather it is very uncomfortable to go by overcrowded bus. In the hospital was air conditioning only on the intensive care unit. Everywhere else was very hot. 

The best experience

Birthday celebration, which was organized by students. It was a great surprise for me, I got a birthday cake, flowers, presents from my friends who I met during the clerkship.

Surprises and cultural differences

In the city there aren´t timetables for public transport. You can wait for bus for about 30 minutes. After 20:00 pm you have to travel by taxi.


hrachovinova.d (at) seznam.cz


I recommend to have the basic knowledge of Russian before the departure. The hospital which I visited had very good equipment. But I know that some students were shocked because of their hospital.

Mosque in the center of the cityOn the trip with other studentsMy birthday celebrationWith my Spanish friend in monastery near KazanInvitation of all studentsIn hospital with our tutor (in the middle) and with my friend from Canada