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Medical Mission Trips

Medical Mission Trips With IVHQ

Are you interested in medical mission trips to enhance your global perspective on medicine, while supporting the provision of basic medical care and healthcare education to communities with limited access to healthcare services?

International Volunteer HQ has over 9 years of experience in organizing medical missions for medical students, pre-medical students and healthcare professionals wanting to volunteer in Africa, Asia, Central America or South America. 

Whether you are traveling solo or want to organize a medical mission trip for a group of students or professionals, IVHQ makes organizing a medical mission easy and affordable with 16 different destinations to choose from. This gives you the opportunity to travel abroad and work alongside local medical professionals, engaging in mutually-beneficial learning exchanges while providing valuable support to hospitals and clinics within the local communities. With your airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support all included in your program fee, you can leave home feeling confident that you'll be well supported in your new home away from home. Plus, you'll be in the company of like-minded international medical students and professionals who share your passion for developing your skills and global medical perspective.

What are the requirements to join a medical mission trip?

IVHQ offers affordable medical mission trips for nursing students and medical students, as well as trips for qualified healthcare professionals. If you're an aspiring healthcare professional, we also organize medical mission trips for pre med and pre nursing students. 

All volunteers are supervised by local staff during a medical mission, so regardless of your level of qualification or experience, you can feel confident that you will be well supported to make a valuable contribution on your mission trip.

Where can I go on a medical mission?

If you have completed your second year of medical or nursing school, or if you are a qualified healthcare professional, you are are eligible to join IVHQ in Argentina, Bali, Costa Rica, Ghana, Guatemala, India (Delhi), Nepal, Peru (Lima and Cusco), Tanzania, Uganda and Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City). 

If you're a pre med or pre nursing student, you have the opportunity to volunteer in a variety of settings as part of a medical mission and you can join IVHQ's medical volunteer projects in Argentina, Bali, Costa Rica, Guatemala, India (Delhi), Peru (Cusco), Tanzania and Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh).

In these destinations, nursing and medical students can expect to support a range of tasks, working across a variety of healthcare settings. This can include providing basic patient care, taking vitals, dressing wounds, triage nursing, and helping to prepare medical equipment. There are also opportunities to observe local doctors and nurses in operating rooms, as well as shadow their daily routines.

Our IVHQ Program Managers will offer guidance as to which destination would be best suited to your interests and experience, as some of our programs offer opportunities specific to certain skills and medical specialties. We are committed to aligning your qualifications and interests with the needs of the local community. Examples of medical volunteer opportunities with IVHQ include:

  • Dentistry - Peru, Guatemala, India, Tanzania, Uganda
  • Pharmacy - Peru, India, Zambia, Tanzania
  • Physical Therapy - Peru (Cusco and Lima), Vietnam, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Uganda, Zambia
  • Physiotherapy - Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City)
  • Gynecology - Peru (Cusco and Lima), Sri Lanka, India, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia
  • HIV/AIDS - Costa Rica, Uganda, Zambia
  • Lab Technology - Peru (Cusco and Lima), India, Uganda, Zambia
  • Midwifery - Peru (Cusco), India, Zambia, Ghana, Tanzania, Uganda
  • Nutritionist - Peru (Cusco and Lima), Guatemala
  • Optometry - Peru (Cusco and Lima)
  • Orthopedics - Peru (Lima), Sri Lanka, Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City)
  • Occupational Therapy - Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh City)
  • Paramedics - Peru (Cusco and Lima), Guatemala, Costa, India, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia
  • Pediatrics - Peru, (Cusco and Lima) Guatemala, Costa, India, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia
  • Radiology - Peru (Cusco), Nepal, India, Vietnam
  • Sonography - Peru (Cusco), Tanzania
  • HIV/AIDS Support - Costa Rica, Uganda, Zambia

If you are traveling with a group of medical students or colleagues and would like to participate on a one-week medical campaign, you can volunteer abroad as a group in the following locations: Costa Rica, Guatemala, India, Nepal, Peru (Cusco and Lima).

How long can I go on a medical mission for?

IVHQ runs volunteer programs year-round and you can choose to volunteer abroad for durations ranging from 1 week to 24 weeks, so it’s easy to coordinate a volunteer trip that works with your schedule.

How do I apply for a medical mission with IVHQ?

  • Browse our medical mission opportunities and choose a destination and the program you wish to volunteer on, as well as the dates you wish to volunteer. 
  • Complete the free online application form with the details of your chosen program and dates, as well as details of your qualifications, skills and experience in the medical field. You will then receive an email from IVHQ received your application. Within 48 hours (2 working days), you will receive an email from your IVHQ Program Manager acknowledging your application and confirming the country, project and dates of your volunteer program. In this email, you will receive instructions on how to pay the US$279 Registration Fee in order to confirm your booking with IVHQ.
  • Log in to your MyIVHQ profile to pay your Registration Fee. As soon as your Registration Fee has been received by IVHQ, you will be provided with all the information and support you need to prepare for your upcoming volunteer program. Your IVHQ Program Manager will be your point of contact throughout your preparations up until you finish your volunteer program.
  • Contact the IVHQ Groups Team if you are looking to volunteer abroad as a group, so we can customize a medical mission trip for you.

Lean more about our medical volunteer abroad programs below to find the opportunity that's right for you:

Nepal Medical Mission Volunteer Program

  • Qualifications required: Medical/nursing students, qualified doctors, nurses and paramedics
  • Placement settings: Hospitals or medical schools
  • Program duration: Volunteer for 2 to 12 weeks, programs start on the 1st and 3rd Monday of each month
  • Program fees: From $250USD (+$50USD per week medical surcharge to cover training and resources used). Fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

Third-year nursing or medical students have the opportunity to join IVHQ's Medical project in Nepal, volunteering in hospitals in Kathmandu, Chitwan or Pokhara. By shadowing qualified physicians and nurses, you can have the opportunity to familiarize yourself with procedures in the operating surgery ward, provide support in the physical therapy and burns units, learn about immunizations and family planning, and provide support to new mothers. Qualified nurses and medical professionals can request to work in their area of expertise, including ICU, radiology, oncology, emergency, surgery, burns unit, gynecology, pediatrics and pharmacy. 

IVHQ medical volunteer programs in Nepal

“I would recommend this program to anybody. As a recent medical graduate, I found that I was able to give and take as much as I could from the program. The two week rural placement gave me experience and an opportunity to observe diseases, management strategies, and patient interaction. I was also able to help diagnose and treat certain conditions which may have otherwise be missed or misdiagnosed. I have indeed grown to be more independent and appreciate things we take for granted back home. I am extremely grateful for having this opportunity to interact with and serve a very beautiful community in rural Nepal. This is an experience I will never forget.” Sumudu Welikumbura (IVHQ Volunteer in Nepal)

Guatemala Medical Mission Volunteer Program

  • Qualifications required: Medical/nursing students, pre med nursing/medical students, qualified doctors, nurses, CNAs, EMTs, paramedics and public health workers
  • Placement settings: Volunteers are based in local clinics, hospitals and elderly homes
  • Program duration: Volunteer for 1 to 24 weeks, programs start every Monday
  • Program fees: From $299USD (+$65USD medical surcharge per week for supervision, materials and the logistics involved in this project). Fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

Volunteers working on the Medical project in Guatemala can get hands-on experience working with local doctors and nurses in small local clinics, providing check-ups and basic medical care in low income communities. Work is available for volunteers of all experience levels, but assigned tasks and the level of independence a volunteer will have depends their qualifications and experience, as well as Spanish language skills. Activities for students vary but can involve participating in taking weight, height, blood pressure, heart rate and temperature measurements, making beds, cleaning, speaking with patients, preparing materials and sterilizing equipment. More qualified volunteers can help with procedures, basic assessments, triage and treatment alongside local healthcare providers.

IVHQ medical volunteer in Guatemala

“The project was a perfect integration of basic sciences and clinical medicine, and it also allowed for the group to see preventative and diagnostic medicine. It was exactly what we were looking for as 1st/2nd year medical students. The fact that we got to see a rural village as well as the schools was a great asset to this trip. It really allowed the group to contrast what undeserved areas are really like when outside of the U.S. The hands on experiences that we were able to participate in are priceless and will be held dear to everyone on the trip. ” Madison Bangert (IVHQ Volunteer in Guatemala)

Uganda Medical Mission Volunteer Program

  • Qualifications required: Students who have complete at least 2 years at medical/nursing school, qualified doctors, nurses, CNAs, paramedics and public health workers (on the HIV/AIDS project)
  • Placement settings: Local clinic
  • Program duration: Volunteer for 1 to 24 weeks, programs start on the 1st and 3rd Monday of each month
  • Program fees: From $270USD which includes airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

Medical volunteers traveling to Uganda should come prepared to work in placements that are under-resourced and under-staffed, meaning volunteers support is greatly appreciated. Working alongside local doctors and nurses, volunteers gain a first-hand insight into the healthcare system of Uganda, while providing valued support to the local clinics in which they are placed. Possible areas of work include maternity, pediatrics, geriatrics, laboratory, pharmacy, cancer screening, family planning, immunizations, general medicine, gynecology, dentistry, HIV/AIDS (counseling, treatment and testing).

IVHQ medical volunteer in Uganda

“The placement in the hospital and the HIV-AIDS project was the experience we were pursuing from this trip and they truly reached our expectations. This was an unforgettable experience that also gave us a great insight of the health system and the sanitary and living conditions in general in Uganda. We completed the program having enriched our medical knowledge and experience and most importantly our emotional sphere.” Antonios Lazaridis (IVHQ Volunteer in Uganda)

Peru Medical Mission Volunteer Program

  • Qualifications required: Medical/nursing students, qualified doctors, nurses and CNAs with an intermediate level of Spanish
  • Placement settings: A mobile "clini-bus"
  • Program duration: Volunteer for 1 to 24 weeks, programs start on the 1st and 15th of each month
  • Program fees: From $180USD which includes airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

Medical and nursing students who speak at least intermediate Spanish can help a mobile clinic provide healthcare access to underprivileged areas of Lima, while working alongside Peruvian healthcare professionals. Volunteers in Peru cater to a range of patient needs, as the clinic is operated in a bus that reaches neighborhoods where people cannot always afford even basic healthcare. Depending on your level of experience and Spanish skill level, you may provide assistance with initial assessments, essential procedures like vaccinations and wound care, triage or helping with the operational set up each day.

IVHQ medical volunteer in Lima, Peru

“Everything was above and beyond what I had hoped for. The house had everything we needed, and the food was AMAZING. IVHQ are the best. I had the most fulfilling trip, and am already planning on returning next summer. Thanks so much for making volunteering affordable and fun.” – Olivia Gissing (IVHQ Volunteer in Lima, Peru)

India Medical Mission Volunteer Program

  • Qualifications required: Pre-medical/nursing students, medical/nursing students, qualified doctors, nurses and CNAs
  • Placement settings: In Delhi volunteers work in a hospital and mobile clinic, while volunteers in Dharamsala are placed in a community clinic
  • Program duration: Volunteer for 1 to 24 weeks, programs start on the 1st and 3rd Monday of each month
  • Program fees: From $250USD which includes airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

Delhi provides opportunities for both medical/nursing students, as well as qualified professionals to gain a first-hand insight to the medical systems in one of the world's fast-growing countries. Volunteers in India work in hospitals and clinics in Delhi, shadowing experienced physicians who are enthusiastic about exchanging their knowledge and experience with international volunteers. Here, volunteers assist with routine jobs, such as taking vitals, providing advice regarding health, nutrition and sanitation during routine check-ups, or treating minor injuries and wounds. Longer-term volunteers (staying 3 months or more) will have more scope to assist with hands-on tasks, and qualified professionals may request to work in their area of expertise.

Medical volunteer in INdia with International Volunteer HQ

“It was such a good experience! My host family was the best I have ever stayed with so sweet, kind and helpful. They treated me like family and were always looking out for me. We were provided all we needed at the wonderful apartment and three delicious meal a day. On the health project we were given a chance to see many sides of Indian healthcare system and all of our questions were answered answered. I was so impressed with each placement and learned so much. It was very good that for as a brand new nurse with so little clinical experience I was given a chance to learn so much.” - Katelyn Rowland (IVHQ Volunteer in Delhi, India)

Tanzania Medical Mission Volunteer Program

  • Qualifications required: Students who have complete at least 3 years at medical/nursing school, qualified doctors, nurses, CNAs, EMTs, paramedics and public health workers on the HIV/AIDS Support project
  • Placement settings: Volunteers are based in variety of local Clinics and small Hospitals
  • Program duration: Volunteer for 1 to 24 weeks, programs start on the 1st and 15th of each month
  • Program fees: Start from $270USD (+ a one off placement fee of US$80). Fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

Medical volunteers are greatly received in Tanzania, especially those who come with initiative, enthusiasm and readiness to work in very basic facilities with limited resources available. Volunteers work in a variety of settings, including medical clinics and hospitals, with the location depending on the volunteers previous experience and training. To comply with the Tanzania Healthcare System, volunteers will shadow local doctors and assist in performing basic patient care, and it’s important to note that this project focuses more on observation, than getting involved in operations or independent medical tasks. This project is ideal for those who have completed at least 2 years of medical or nursing school, or those wanting to broaden their experience and knowledge of healthcare systems around the world.

Medical volunteer in Tanzania with IVHQ

“Experiencing medicine in a third world hospital was amazing and eye opening. The doctors were extremely welcoming and grateful. Exploring Arusha and Moshi with the other volunteers and seeing the African culture first hand were some of my favorite moments.” Amy Freeman (IVHQ Volunteer in Tanzania)

Vietnam Medical Mission Volunteer Program

  • Qualifications required: Pre-medical/nursing students, qualified doctors, nurses, CNAs and EMTs
  • Placement settings: Volunteers are based in a hospital in Ho Chi Minh City
  • Program duration: Volunteer for 2 to 24 weeks, programs start every Monday
  • Program fees: From $295USD (+$25USD per week for training provided and resources used on this project). Fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

Both students and skilled medical professionals have the opportunity to experience a new working environment and the Vietnamese culture, while developing their global medical perspective as volunteers in Vietnam. Volunteers here provide support to an orthopedic and rehabilitation hospital, working alongside and local doctors or nurses in the areas of physiotherapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy. Here, volunteers work with children and adults who suffer from cerebral palsy, Down’s syndrome, congenital motor system deformity and other disabilities. Depending on your level of experience, you may observe operations, provide assistance in basic procedures and visit patients before and after surgery.

IVHQ medical volunteer in Vietnam

“The medical placement was the perfect combination of challenging, rewarding and eye-opening. I continue to be inspired by all the hard-working staff and medical team at the hospital, who do so much but with so little. Amazing!” - Phuong Dinh (IVHQ Volunteer in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam)

Want to learn more about IVHQ's full range of Medical and Healthcare volunteer abroad projects? Discover all your options here

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