MSF surgeon Steve Mannion

“Of the surgeons who manage to get the time to work overseas in a developing country, few will ever regret it: the overall benefit of the experience far outweighs any perceived deleterious effect on career, love, life or bank balance”

Steve Mannion MSF Surgeon

MSF surgeons often work with emergency teams to treat people wounded in conflict zones. At other times, they join teams that provide longer-term surgical care to communities without access to functioning healthcare systems.

During conflicts and their aftermath, surgeons are needed for assignments generally lasting from six weeks to three months or more. Responsibilities include general surgery, surgical-needs assessment, and training of local staff.  


Paul McMaster, MSF surgeon
MSF experience

Find out from Paul McMaster what it means to be a surgeon with MSF.

Paul has worked with us in the aftermath of the Haiti earthquake, and has helped people caught up in conflict in South Sudan and Syria.

Read more




  • Post-MRCS or FRCS, with higher surgical training and an ability to work autonomously
  • Full GMC or Irish Medical Council registration
  • Ability to perform general surgery including Paediatrics and Caesarean sections. Some experience in A&E and orthopaedics is desirable
  • Current or recent practical experience
  • Ability to work with limited resources Experience in managing, supervising and training others
  • Able  to work well as a part of a multi-cultural and multi-disciplinary team
  • Willing to work in unstable areas and ability to cope in a difficult and unpredictable environment
  • Availability for a minimum period of two months to six months
  • Minimum of three months work, volunteering or travelling experience in developing countries

The Surgical Training for Austere Environments (STAE) is a course that was designed in collaboration between MSF and the Royal College of Surgeons. The aim of the course is to provide experienced surgeons with the essential general surgical skills needed to work abroad in low resource settings. MSF strongly recommends this course to all surgeons that want to work abroad with us.

MSF is currently looking for Surgeons with good French skills. If you speak French to a level where you can be placed in a French speaking mission such as the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Chad or Central African Republic, you are much more likely to be accepted onto the MSF register. Arabic skills are also in demand.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Please use this CV format if you would like to apply to work for MSF as a surgeon. Without this format their applications will not be accepted.

Click here for details of the application process