Bună ziua.  We are students from the University of Brighton (in England) as part of the European Nursing Exchange module, which is a 2 week exchange program where 2nd year nursing students can visit countries within the EU. Our choice was between Romania, Bulgaria, Spain, Norway, Denmark and Sweden.

We chose to come to Romania as we were interested to see how the healthcare system might differ in Eastern Europe and to see how the system works with fewer resources. During our time in Romania we have found that our healthcare systems are not as different as, maybe, we thought they were. Other than the differences in the nurse – patient ratio we have found that things here are quite similar to those in the UK.

Our first day was spent in the Carol Davila College in Bucharest, where the staff greeted us. We found that our curriculum is very similar to the one here in your college. We both spend half our time in practice and half our time in college. We have visited 7 hospitals ranging from private to public, paediatric to emergency.

We have been shown around a wide variety of departments and wards, with the nurses all very willing to answer any questions we have had.

We have noticed that all the staff appear to get on well with their colleagues. There seems to be less of a hierarchy system between staff than in the UK, leading to a more relaxed working environment.

Since arriving in Bucharest, we have been able to explore the city with the help of two 1st year students. We have visited the village museum, the art museum and Palatul Parlamentului, as well as the Lipscani area of Bucharest. We have also visited a collection of parks, including Gradina Cismigiu and seen a collection of Churches and monasteries.

We have tried many traditional Romanian dishes, which we have mainly enjoyed. Dishes we have tried include; Ciorbă de fasole in paine, Ciorbă de burtă, Varză à la Cluj and our particular favorite being the pancakes*.

We were also lucky enough to spend a weekend in the mountains, visiting the castles at Peles and Bran. We stayed in the town of Sighişoara, before returning to Bucharest via Braşov. Again we found everyone really welcoming and have found the Romanian countryside to be beautiful, with a lot of interesting history.

We have found that most of our cultural differences center around religion. In the UK it is more of a multi-cultural society and nurses are encouraged not to express their faith in any form. The hospitals in the UK do provide spiritual support when required for a variety of religions.  Whereas in Romania expressions of faith seemed to be welcomed in hospital and by staff; this is shown by the presence of religious images in most rooms.

It has become apparent to us that here in Romania the same nursing models are being taught as in the UK, encouraging nurses to meet the patients needs holistically; physical, emotional, social and spiritual.  We have noticed this in the hospitals that we visited. We have gained an understanding of the international aspect of nursing and that nurses throughout the European Community are trained in a similar way. We also had the opportunity to attend a session celebrating Florence Nightingale’s birthday that forms the basis of International Nursing Day.

This module has helped us look at not only how other nursing systems work, but also to reflect on our own. We have seen things in Romania that we feel would benefit our own healthcare system, such as doctors wearing uniforms, good communication between professionals, and hospital food cooked on site.

We have really enjoyed this opportunity and would like to thank everyone who has made our experience a good one.


Samantha Leycester, Jenny Wilson, Sarah Bell and Toya Mendez

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Unica școală din România membră European Nuring Module din 1999

Ghidul Școlii – 2022

Portalul Mobilitatii Europene

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