Toughest Place to Be

Toughest Place to Be a Nurse

Series 3 - Episode 3 Toughest Place to Be a Nurse



Maria is a nursing sister at the shiny, well-equipped and safe Royal Preston Hospital, so she gets a nasty shock when she arrives at the only public hospital in the gang-ravaged Mexican border town of Ciudad Juárez. It’s one of the world’s most dangerous places, and Maria needs the “adventurous spirit” her friends commend her for.

During her two weeks on the wards, which are guarded by heavily armed police officers, she sees gunshot victims and hears hair-raising stories of gangs roaming the hospital corridors to kill their rivals. Maria is aghast: “[In England] you’d be offered counselling if someone shouted loudly in your face.”


Maria Connolly, an emergency nurse from Preston, spends two weeks working at a hospital in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. Located on the American border, the city is at the centre of a drug war that has claimed more than 50,000 lives, and has one of the highest murder rates in the world. Working alongside local nurse Pablo Vasquez, Maria relies on basic equipment to treat a staggering number of patients suffering from gunshot injuries and stab wounds - and is shocked to discover the hospital has itself been the location of gun battles in the past. Last in the series.