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14 Top Resources to Learn Medical

English for Healthy Communication at


Work
There’s English…

And then there’s medical English.

Even to native English speakers, medical English can seem like its own, complicated
foreign language.

If you’re an English learner working in or studying the medical field, it can be easy to
get overwhelmed by all the long, hard-to-pronounce terms.

On top of that, you’ll often need to switch back and forth between medical English with
your colleagues and standard English with patients.

Starting to feel dizzy?

Don’t worry—we’ve got the perfect treatment.

In this article, we’ll show you some excellent resources to learn and practice medical
English. These include formal classes, online lessons and casual podcasts. Whether
you’re a doctor, nurse, medical student, hospital manager, pharmacist or anyone else
who needs to learn English for medicine, you’ll find something below to give your
communication skills a healthy boost!

Just What the Doctor Ordered! 14 Top


Resources to Learn Medical English

1. Online English for Medicine Lessons


With online lessons, you can develop your medical English skills at a time and pace that
works for you. That way, you can remember all of those medical words and phrases that
aren’t usually talked about in casual conversations.

Here are some online courses to help you as you’re learning English for medicine:

Englishmed
Englishmed is a comprehensive website that teaches general medical English for
people working in healthcare, as well as advanced English for doctors and nurses.

With Englishmed, you get free reading, writing, speaking and listening exercises for:

 Doctors
 Nurses
 Pharmacists
 General healthcare staff

There are other helpful interactive features on the website, so you can practice the
skills you learn in each lesson. These include animated dialogues and activities to help
with learning grammar and medical terms.

Medical English

MedicalEnglish.com is a paid English for medicine course that helps doctors, nurses
and medical school students learn how to communicate in the medical industry. The
program, which is intended for intermediate and advanced students, costs $9 a month
and covers 20 topics, such as anatomy, mental health and dentistry.

The course is comprehensive and includes a number of activities that test reading,
writing, listening, speaking and vocabulary knowledge. Students can study and
complete assignments on their computer, smartphone and mobile device.

And everyone who passes the course is given a certificate saying they’ve completed the
MedicalEnglish.com program. That’s a great boost to your CV if you’re looking for
jobs in the medical field.

FluentU

To become fluent in medical English, you need to learn how it’s used in real
professional settings. FluentU makes this possible with authentic English videos—like
hospital dialogues, medical news clips and more—that’ve been transformed into
language learning experiences.

Each video comes with interactive captions. You can click any word for an instant
definition, pronunciation and visual learning aid. FluentU will also show you other
videos that have the word so you can learn how to use it in any context. There are
flashcards and exercises to help you remember what you’ve learned when you’re done
watching a video.

This system allows you to learn new medical vocabulary naturally, rather than trying
to force yourself to memorize it. Plus, you’ll be absorbing native English accents and
speaking styles as you go!
It’s easy to personalize FluentU for your own learning program or for your whole
team at work. The videos are organized by genre and learning level, and FluentU will
suggest new videos based on what you’ve already learned. Built-in tracking tools make
it easy to measure everyone’s language progress.

Best of all, when you’re ready for something a little lighter, FluentU has tons of casual
English videos, like movie trailers, music videos, inspiring talks and more. You can
check out the full video library for free with a FluentU trial.

English Health Train

English Health Train is a free online medical course for ESL students studying
advanced English for medicine. The site is designed specifically for medical students,
doctors and nurses who’re studying or working in an English-speaking country.

English Health Train is one of the most comprehensive free courses on the internet. In
total, its curriculum offers around 240 to 320 hours of coursework, depending on how
quickly you learn. It’s designed just like a classroom curriculum and comes with five
modules that cover different subjects of medical English, including:

 Medical careers
 How to talk with patients and their families
 Talking with your coworkers

Inside every module is a set number of units. Each unit contains a listening,
pronunciation, reading and vocabulary exercise, as well as a practical exercise called
“project work” that requires you to use your medical English skills in a real-world
setting.

If you’d like to learn more about English Health Train, you can take a look at their
activities for the first module here.

2. Medical Podcasts in English


Whether you’re learning English for medicine for the first time or you just want to
brush up on your vocabulary, medical podcasts are a great tool.

Podcasts are perfect learning tools for people who don’t have the time to sit down and
read textbooks or work through online courses. You can listen to them anywhere, like
on the bus, in the kitchen while you’re cooking dinner or around the house while you’re
cleaning. And since they cover up-to-date information, you get to learn about what’s
new in the medical industry while improving your vocabulary and practicing your
listening skills.

Reading and Listening for Medical Workers


This podcast is part of a professional ESL program called “Interesting Things for ESL
Students.” Here, you can find podcasts and news articles covering different topics
within medicine, such as:

 How to be a doctor in the U.S.


 Treatments for epilepsy
 The effects of eating too much salt

While the podcast episodes don’t focus on advanced medical English, like anatomy or
scientific terminology, it’s perfect for ESL students trying to learn general medical
information.

Also, each episode comes with a script that you can read as you follow along.

Cancer Newsline from MD Anderson Cancer Center

As the name suggests, the episodes on the Cancer Newsline podcast focus primarily on
cancer. It’s a great option for upper-intermediate and advanced students or professionals
who need to communicate in a medical field where cancer is common. You can
subscribe to it on iTunes here.

Even if you’re not going to work in oncology (the study and treatment of cancer), you
should still give this site a visit. Halfway down the webpage, you’ll find a section called
“I*CARE Video Gallery.”

There, you can watch a number of medical videos about:

 Giving bad news to patients and families


 How to communicate with patients
 Ways to better understand your patients

The video gallery has three categories that’ll expose you to a range of formal and
conversational English speech: Roundtables (discussions), ACE Lectures (educational
lectures) and Patients and Families (general information).

Health Check by the BBC


Health Check is a weekly podcast on disease and medicine around the world. The
podcast is best suited for upper-intermediate and advanced students who’re already
able to follow news broadcasts relatively easily. It’s great for anyone trying to stay
current with events in medicine.

The podcast episodes cover a number of different topics, such as disease outbreaks in
developing countries, the dangers of high blood pressure and how to improve your
immune system. But remember, episodes only last for 30 days before the BBC removes
them. So if you want to listen to a certain episode, don’t wait too long!

Surgery 101

Surgery 101 is a podcast designed to help explain the different types of surgery and
how they’re performed. The average podcast episode lasts between 10 and 15 minutes.
They’re presented in a way that medical students and non-medical students can both
benefit from.

The podcast episodes are separated into categories based on the type of surgical method,
like cardiac surgery (for the heart), neurosurgery (for the brain) and pediatric surgery
(for children). Fortunately, each category has a picture that makes it easy to
understand if you don’t happen to know the word in English.

In addition to their website, Surgery 101 has a downloadable podcast on iTunes and a
YouTube channel with various videos. Don’t worry—they’re not videos of real surgery
procedures!

Instant Anatomy
Instant Anatomy is a podcast available on iTunes that goes into detail about the
different parts of the body. Here, you can learn English names for all the bones,
organs, muscles and other parts of the body, as well as what each body part does.

The podcast is great for ESL students learning more about the human body, but it’s
designed with medical students in mind—not ESL students specifically. For this reason,
it might be a little difficult for anyone who isn’t already an advanced English speaker.

Along with downloading the podcast on iTunes, you can visit the Instant Anatomy
website and download the notes for each lesson. Here, you can find detailed, labeled
drawings of each part of the body covered in the episode.

Medical Terminology Systems

Medical Terminology Systems is a podcast for medical students that talks about the
different types of systems in the body, as well what they do and what their names mean
in basic English. You can learn about topics like the digestive system, the nervous
system and the reproductive system in English.

Also, you’ll notice that the Medical Terminology System’s podcast is made to
complement the “Medical Terminology Systems” textbook. It’s important to note that
you don’t need this textbook to benefit from the podcast. The podcast helps you learn
how to pronounce and memorize different systems in the body so that you’re able to
talk about them without using advanced medical terms.

3. Learn English for Medicine in the Classroom


Along with learning at home through online programs and podcasts, you can also enroll
in intensive in-person medical English courses. These courses are designed specifically
for ESL students who plan on working in medicine or going to medical school in an
English-speaking country.

The benefit of learning in a physical classroom is that the curriculum is usually flexible
enough to help both intermediate and advanced English speakers learn medical English.
Also, classroom lessons are great for students who need in-person assistance from an
instructor from time to time.

In-class lessons typically get filled up quickly, so always make sure to apply a few
months in advance. And if the program has already ended, email customer service or
frequently check the website to see when a new course begins.

Here are a few popular English for medicine programs in various countries:

Medical English as a Foreign Language (EFL) for Nurses

Location: McGill University, Montreal, Canada.

This is a two-week intensive workshop that teaches nurses how to use English when
talking with doctors and patients. Students also get the opportunity to observe nurses in
the hospital, go on day trips and learn about how hospitals work in Canada.

The price is $3,150 Canadian Dollars (approximately $2,400 USD).

UC San Diego Extension Medical English Course

Location: University of California-San Diego, California, U.S.

The UC San Diego medical English program is a four-week international program that
offers an 80-hour course and a 60-hour course. Both of these courses teach students how
to use English in the medical profession, but the 80-hour course is more intensive and
includes guest speakers, field trips and hands-on exercises.

You’ll learn how to communicate in a hospital setting, from taking medical histories to
medical writing. You’ll also learn about the healthcare system in the U.S.

The tuition for the 80-hour program is $2,500 and the 60-hour program costs $2,200.
The tuition price doesn’t include textbooks and additional fees, which are around $645.

Wimbledon School of English Medical English Course

Location: Wimbledon School of English, London, England.

The Medical English Course gives intermediate and advanced English students the
chance to learn medical English in the classroom. Students can choose between a three-
week course that begins in January or a two-week intensive program in July.

The tuition for the three-week program is £295 per week (approximately 390 USD) and
the intensive two-week program is £345 per week (approximately 450 USD).

English for Medical Professionals at Lexis English

Location: Lexis English, multiple locations, Australia

This program teaches intermediate and advanced learners how to speak English while
working as doctors, nurses, therapists, dentists, pharmacists and general healthcare
professionals.
Programs vary between four to 12 weeks depending on whether you learn full-time or
part-time. A new class begins every month of the year, either at the end or the beginning
of the month, and courses are held at Lexis English campuses in:

 Brisbane
 Perth
 Sunshine Coast

Tuition fees vary depending on the campus, so make sure to ask about fees when
enrolling in the program.

Learning medicine might not be easy, but with these resources, learning how to talk
about it in English can be. With a little bit of practice every week, you’ll be talking like
a doctor in no time.

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