Volunteer Public Health Internships Abroad
In many of the countries where we work, healthcare services are limited. We need people like you to help bridge the gap and provide locals with basic medical treatment that they would otherwise not receive. Gain greater insight into the field of Public Health while working to improve the overall quality of life for those in disadvantaged communities.
Volunteering on a Public Health placement
As a Public Health intern, you may find yourself working in a number of different placements, depending on the project you choose. Our Public Health projects are very community-orientated, so you will spend a lot of time working alongside qualified medical professionals in local clinics, community centres and schools. You may also find yourself conducting home visits, or travelling to rural villages.
The combination of poor provision of healthcare services, along with poverty and a general lack of awareness around healthcare issues means that many people with injuries or illnesses such as malaria or dengue fever go untreated.
Furthermore, developing countries are facing a huge burden by the increasing numbers of people with non-communicable diseases (NCDs). These include illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer. The healthcare systems are simply unable to cope with the demand for treatment, and there is little to no focus on prevention or education.
What will I do on a Public Health internship?
Public Health internships offer volunteers the opportunity to get involved in a diverse array of interesting tasks. There are two main aspects to these placements:
Public Health Campaigns
Interns work on promoting awareness of NCDs, especially with relation to lifestyle factors such as unhealthy diet and lack of exercise. There is also a focus on educating people about pertinent healthcare issues in their region, such as dengue fever in the Philippines. Awareness and education happens through visits to schools and community centres, as well as support groups and workshops. Topics cover anything from the importance of basic hygiene to disease prevention.
Projects Abroad run mobile clinics and community outreaches in areas where healthcare services are lacking. Volunteers and local staff provide basic medical treatment, checking vitals such as blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol. Patients are then referred for further consultation with a doctor if these tests show a cause for concern. These medical checks may also involve minor wound treatments, testing for specific diseases, screening for worms, and vaccinations.
"During my Public Health Project in San Pedro, we got deeply involved in the community. We did lice checks in schools and organised health fairs in schools and public places where we handed out information about nutrition and communicable and non-communicable diseases. We also spent a couple of days doing eye screenings at a school so that we could inform the optometrist, who would be visiting the island, about which children needed an eye test and might need glasses to help with reading and writing."
Public Health in Belize