Many volunteers with experience in the health and medical field seek volunteer opportunities abroad. IVHQ’s Medical and Healthcare projects have varying qualification requirements and with project options in over 20 international destinations, it can initially be a little daunting trying to figure out where to go and which project will be best suited to your level of training and speciality. To help guide your decision-making we’ve created a guide to the IVHQ Top Medical Volunteer Abroad Opportunities.
Volunteer in Lima, Peru
Help from volunteers is greatly appreciated on the Lima Medical project, as hands-on assistance is needed for the busy “Clini-Bus” medical campaign. Coach-size buses that have been converted into fully functioning mobile clinics move location throughout the city each day, in order to expand the reach of this fantastic health campaign. As each of the three “Clini-Buses” caters to a different medical need or specialty, there is a lot of scope for volunteers to assist in varying medical fields.
Great option for: Spanish speakers, Nursing/Medical School students, fully qualified professionals and specialists, and those looking for a real hands-on experience.
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)_
Volunteer in Uganda
Volunteers on the Uganda project should be prepared for placements that are under-resourced and under-staffed. That being said, there is great scope for working alongside the local doctors and nurses to make a valuable contribution, as there is a high volume of patients and possible areas of work include Maternity, Paediatrics, Geriatrics (as well as outreaches to elderly groups in the community), Surgery, Laboratory, Pharmacy, Cancer Screening, Family Planning, Immunisations, General Medicine, Gynaecology, Dentistry, HIV/AIDS (counselling, treatment and testing) and youth counseling.
Great option for: Those who have completed at least 2 years of Medical/Nursing School or fully qualified professionals who can use initiative and take a flexible approach to work.
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)
Volunteer in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam
The Medical project in Ho Chi Minh allows for a wonderful exchange, as both skilled medical professionals and students are encouraged to interact with local doctors to share knowledge in order to gain a deeper understanding of the similarities and differences between practices. The placement takes place in a local Orthopaedic and Rehabilitation hospital and volunteers are able to work within the fields of physiotherapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy with children and adults who suffer from cerebral palsy, Down’s syndrome, congenital motor system deformity and other disabilities.
Great option for: Pre-Medical School students who are seeking to develop their specialized medical knowledge through shadowing and assisting with basic procedures. Qualified professionals also welcome.
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)
Volunteer in Guatemala
The Guatemala Medical project offers placements in small local clinics and offers a variety of activities related to providing check-ups and basic medical care for low income families, orphanages, elderly care and special needs facilities. As independence in this project will always be determined according to a volunteer’s individual level of experience and competency, the scope of work varies.
Great option for: An introduction to basic medical care, healthcare campaigns for volunteer group trips, a wide variety of medical settings and specialities available for pre-med to fully qualified healthcare professionals.
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 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)
When applying, please include in your application a detailed indication of your skills, experience and qualifications related to the medical field. This helps us to accurately assess your application and provide guidance on the best medical project options for you. It also enables the local staff in-country to designate a placement to you that best utilizes your skills, interests and experience.