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Portugal flag.jpg
Location Portugal location.png
Participating cities (LC's) Braga NEMUM, Porto ICBAS, Porto FMUP, Covilhã MedUBI, Coimbra NEMAAC, Lisboa FML, Lisboa FCML and Algarve NEMed
Languages Portuguese
Currency (how much is a Bigmac?) 2,95 Euro
Time zone GMT +0:00
Number of Doctors and beds per 1000 people 3,5
Member of IFMSA since... 1983
Number of incoming students per year 230
Who are our NEO's Rúben Raimundo
Our official website
Come for exchange!

Welcome Note


Welcome to the Portuguese SCOPE page!

Do you want to know more about us?

Just keep reading and you will find thousands of reasons to come to Portugal on exchange!



Portugal is the westernmost country of mainland Europe, situated at the south west point of Europe, on Iberian Peninsula, and includes the Atlantic Madeira and Azores archipelagos. It is bordered on the East and North by Spain and on the West and South by the Atlantic Ocean.

Mainland Portugal occupies an area of 88,889 km2. It is 218 km wide, 561 km long, 832 km of Atlantic Coast and a 1215 km border with Spain.

It is split by its main river, the Tejo.

The northern landscape is mountainous in interior areas, with plateaus indented by river valleys. The south, between the Tejo and the Algarve (with Alentejo in the middle), features mostly rolling plains.

Portugal is a EU member since 1986.

By 2007, Portugal had 10,617,575 inhabitants.

Our health care system

Our health system is characterized by three coexisting systems: the National Health Service (NHS), special social health insurance schemes for certain professions (health subsystems) and voluntary private health insurance.

The NHS provides universal coverage. In addition, about 25% of the population is covered by the health subsystems, 10% by private insurance schemes and another 7% by mutual funds.

The Ministry of Health is responsible for developing health policy as well as managing the NHS. Five regional health administrations are in charge of implementing the national health policy objectives, developing guidelines and protocols and supervising health care delivery.

The hospitals

The departments NOT available in the majority of the hospitals are: Emergency Medicine, Alternative Medicine, Acupuncture and Tropical Medicine. Check below to see more details. Students applying for Psychiatry MUST speak fluent Portuguese.

BRAGA The associated hospital where you’ll spend your time doing your clinical clerkship is the Hospital de Bragawal built during the years of 2010 and 2011 to replace the old Hospital de São Marcos (built in the 16th century). It started to function on May 2011 and it covers 1,2 million people of the North of Portugal. The hospital has 9 main Operating Rooms, 8 Delivery Rooms and 3 rooms of Ambulatory Surgery Center. It also has 4 new departments: Pediatric Surgery, Nephrology, Nuclear Medicine and Radiotherapy.

Emergency Medicine, Forensic Medicine, Hematology, Infectious Diseases, Internal Medicine-Hematology, Internal Medicine-Tropical Medicine, Occupational Medicine, Paediatrics-Neurosurgery, Paediatrics-Oncology, Parasitology, Physiology, Sports Medicine, Surgery-Cardiothoracic Surgery, Surgery-Cardiovascular Surgery, Surgery-Head and Neck Surgery, Surgery-Maxillo-facial Surgery, Traumatology, Tropical Medicine ARE NOT AVAILABLE.

PORTO ICBAS Hospital Geral de Santo António is a credited facility, part of Centro Hospitalar do Porto, and it has 230 years of existence. It is an historical mark and a reference in the Portuguese National Health Service. Built in 1779, it is the biggest building of the British Neoclassic style built out of England. In 1996, a new building was built to satisfy the hospital needs.

Plastic surgery, Cardiovascular surgery ARE NOT AVAILABLE.

PORTO FMUP Hospital de São João is the second biggest hospital in Portugal and the biggest one in the North. It’s an university hospital which shares the same building with the Medicine School of Porto’s University.

COVILHÃ There are three associated hospitals to the faculty: Hospital Pêro da Covilhã (Covilhã), Hospital Sousa Martins (Guarda) and Hospital Amato Lusitano (Castelo Branco). The exchange will take place at Hospital Pêro da Covilhã.

Forensic Medicine, Internal Medicine-Tropical Medicine, Occupational Medicine, Oncology, Paediatrics-Neurosurgery, Paediatrics-Oncology, Paediatrics-Surgery, Physiology, Physiotherapy, Primary Care, Surgery-Cardiothoracic Surgery, Surgery-Cardiovascular Surgery, Surgery-Head and Neck Surgery, Surgery-Maxillo-facial Surgery, Surgery-Neurosurgery, Tropical Medicine ARE NOT AVAILABLE.

COIMBRA Hospitais da Universidade de Coimbra (H.U.C.) is the healthcare unit associated with the medical faculty. Before 1987, like the name suggests, the unit was constituted by 3 hospitals. Now, it is constituted by one building only.

Emergency Medicine, Occupational Medicine, Parasitology, Physiology, Physiotherapy, Primary Care, Sports Medicine, Traumatology, Tropical Medicine ARE NOT AVAILABLE

LISBOA FML There are over 10 associated hospitals scattered all over Lisboa. However, SCOPE exchange students always stay in Hospital de Santa Maria, Portugal’s largest and busiest hospital – although not so much during the summer holidays.

Family Medicine, Forensic Medicine, Gynaecology/Obstetrics, Internal Medicine-Tropical Medicine, Oncology, Sports Medicine, Tropical Medicine ARE NOT AVAILABLE.

LISBOA FCML The New Faculty of Lisboa has about 9 healthcare units associated. Some of them are: Centro Hospitalar de Lisboa Zona Central, Hospital de Curry Cabral, Centro Hospitalar de Lisboa Zona Ocidental, Hospital de Pulido Valente and others. During your clerkship, you can be placed in any of these units.

Family Medicine, Forensic Medicine, Internal Medicine-Tropical Medicine, Microbiology, Nuclear Medicine, Occupational Medicine, Parasitology, Physiology, Primary Care, Sports Medicine, Tropical Medicine ARE NOT AVAILABLE.

ALGARVE This is the most recent medical school in Portugal. Its main Hospital is Hospital de Faro which belongs to Centro Hospitalar de Faro, where your exchange will take place.

Neurology, Urology, Imagiology and Cardiology ARE NOT AVAILABLE.

Our medical education

In Portugal, to become a doctor in a classical faculty, you have to complete 6 years of Medical Studies. The basic sciences are taught during the first 3 years. In the last years, most of the specialities are studied and there is an increase in clinical practice.

The most recent medical school (in Algarve) has a different methodology as its teaching method is Problem Based Learning. In this school, only students with previous graduations can enter and the course duration is of 4 years.

After graduating in either a classical or new school, you have to take an exam in order to access any residency. Completing the residency can take you from 4 to 6 years, depending on the speciality you choose (as a curiosity, to become a general doctor you must also complete 4 years as medical specialization).

Accommodation & Boarding

BRAGA You are going to stay at a Student Hostel, in order to facilitate your insertion in the academic life. The Student Hostel Prof. Doutor Lloyd Braga is located near “Campus Gualtar” and has 150 double bedrooms and 4 individual ones. This Student Hostel has access to Internet via wireless all over the residence. Each bedroom is equipped with a bathroom, telephone, television and a small fridge. In each floor there is a kitchen with a dishwasher, 2 study rooms and, in the last floor, one room for social intercourse and a self-service laundry. You only need to bring towels!

We provide at least one meal a day.

PORTO You will be staying at Residência José Novais Barbosa in the city center. You will live in a single room equipped with bed clothing and towels. The bathroom, living room and laundry room are common areas. This residency has a 24hs surveillance guard that you can contact in case of need.

We provide one meal a day.

COVILHÃ You will be in a student dorm, usually in double rooms (might be single or triple). There are fully equipped bathrooms. Electric current is 220V. If you need you can by an adapter in the airport or in here. The bed sheets will be provided and changed every week. The same applies for the towels. It isn’t admitted at the dorm any other people or pets.

You will be provided with coupons for meals so that you can eat in the canteen of the hospital free of charge.

COIMBRA You are going to stay at a Student Hostel. It is equipped with a living room, television and daily newspaper. Bed sheets are changed once a week. Don't forget to bring towels!

We provide you 2 meals a day, at the University canteens. You can find them all around the city, but specially nearby the faculties and also next to the Hospital. There’s a wide variety of dishes, and you can also found typical Portuguese food in these canteen.

LISBOA You will stay in one of Lisboa’s many University Student Halls, at a convenient distance from both the hospital and the city centre. The halls are made up of double and triple rooms (sex-divided), and four fully equipped bathrooms and one kitchen per floor. Electric current is 220V, and plugs are the round pin attachment type. Desktop and wireless internet access, bed linen, storage space, weekly cleaning service, washing machine and steam iron are provided. Towels, lockers or breakfast are not. Friends, family, significant others or pets are not welcome at the student halls.

We provide 1 meal a day.

ALGARVE You will stay in a student hostel at reasonable distance from both the Hospital and the city centre. The rooms may be single or multiple and are fully equiped.

We provide at least one meal a day at a students canteen.

Social program

BRAGA There’s an organised social program to complement your clerkship. During the week days, activities will occur in the afternoon and at night. You will be able to be part of Braga’s academic life and we intend to show you as much as we can. During the exchange of 2011 the incoming students had the chance to visit not only the city of Braga but also other localities: Gerês, Esposende, Guimarães, Viana do Castelo, Aveiro, Óbidos, Faro and Vigo (Spain). We also have a joint social program together with the local committees of Oporto and Lisbon. One weekend is to visit Oporto and in another one we will take you to Lisbon. The costs will be divided between PorMSIC and the student.

Available in July and from 20 July - 20 August

PORTO During August we plan for you a great social program. We have several activities: tipical dinner parties, a cruise on Douro river, a visit to the famous wineries of Porto, a guided trip around the city, etc. We will organise 2 weekend trips in association with Braga and Lisboa: one to Porto and one to Lisboa. The costs will be divided by PorMSIC and the student.

Only available in July and August.

COVILHÃ There’s an organised social program to complement your clerkship. During the week days, activities will occur only in the afternoon and at night. You will be able to enjoy and have fun in the beautiful Covilhã, but also know some neighbour cities, historical villages from the region, waterfalls, mountain trekking and river beaches. We usually organise 3 weekend trips: one to Porto, one to Lisboa and another to the beach coast. The costs will be divided by PorMSIC and the student.

Only available in January, February, May, July, October, November.

COIMBRA There’s an organised social program to complement your clerkship. During the week days, activities will occur only in the afternoon and at night. We will show you the best Coimbra has to offer, and we want you to participate in the academic life. We will also show you the cities surrounding Coimbra like: Figueira da Foz; Lousã and Aveiro. We will organise 2 weekend trips: one to Lisboa and one to Porto The costs will be divided by PorMSIC and the student.

Only available in July and September.

LISBOA We have planned a comprehensive sightseeing and social programme for you to get to know the best and most traditional parts of Lisboa, and some of the rest of the country as well – namely Porto, Portugal’s second city. It is up to you to decide how much you want to do, but we obviously advise you to do as much as you can. The cost of the social programme is to be fully supported by the student.

Only available in January, March, July, August and November.

ALGARVE We offer you the opportunity to get to know Faro and the nearest cities as well as a weekend in Lisbon with all the incomings from Lisbon, Porto and Braga during August. You can also experience our amazing beaches and travel through the seashore discovering Algarve's beautiful coast. The cost of the social programme is to be fully supported by the student.

Only available in August.

National transportation


The journey between Lisbon and Oporto on the Alfa Pendular train (the fastest and most comfortable train) may vary between €25 and €39.5 (2nd or 1st class) and on InterCity trains the price varies between €19.5 and €28.5, and they both stop in Coimbra. From Lisbon to Faro the fare is between €19.5 and €26 on the Alfa Pendular train and between €18 and €23.5 on the InterCity train. [1]


There are regular connections between the main Portuguese cities. The journey between Lisbon and Oporto may cost around €15.5, between Lisbon and Faro, €16 or €17, between Faro and Oporto €23 and between Lisbon and Coimbra €10.8. [2]


Taxis are painted mostly cream with a roof-light to identify them. However, there are still some taxis which keep the old colours, green and black. In the urban service, the minimum charge (initial price) during the daytime is €2 and €2.50 at nightime, weekends and public holidays. The final fare will be determined in function of the distance travelled and the time. It is normal to give a tip of 10% on top of the fare. Ordering a radio taxi results in an additional cost of €0.80 and transport of luggage requiring use of a roof rack or car boot implies a supplement of €1.6. For transport outside urban areas, the service is paid on a per kilometre basis, and the cost of the return journey is also calculated, regardless of whether or not the passenger makes the return trip. Normally the price is agreed at the beginning of the respective journey.


There are two fundamental aspects to the pleasant Portuguese climate: the Atlantic, felt more in the north, especially the northeast, and the Mediterranean which dominates the south.

The climate in Portugal varies considerably from a region to another and is influenced by the relief, latitude and proximity to the sea.

On the coast the winters are particularly mild. In the North area, particularly inland, the winters are colder, although the temperatures are still mild when compared to the rest of Europe. There is some snowfall, mainly in «Serra da Estrela» («Star’s mountains»), the highest point in continental Portugal (1993m) and where it is possible to ski! The South is warmer, specially Algarve, which enjoys a Mediterranean climate.

Summers are hot and dry, especially in the inland areas («Trás os Montes» and «Alentejo») and autumn and spring can be rainny but also warm and sunny.

Most parts of Portugal are sunny. Daily hours of sunshine average from eight to ten in winter and thirteen to fifteen in summer.

Exchange conditions

Cities offered for exchange



Porto FMUP

Covilhã MedUBI

Coimbra NEMAAC

Lisboa FML

Lisboa FCML

Algarve NEMed