Guatemala – Antigua Medical Internship

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Become a medical intern in Antigua, Guatemala and expand your Spanish language skills!

Program Highlights:

  • Experience life in a colonial region in the highlands of Guatemala
  • Gain experience in medical care
  • Enhance your CV with clinical skills
  • Interns usually get to work one-on-one with a medical professional
  • Daily Spanish language lessons are included

 

Your Schedule at a Glance (Minimum four-week commitment):

Arrival Day, Sunday: Arrive at La Aurora International Airport (GUA). You will be picked up from the airport and taken to your homestay. Spend the day settling in and enjoying the local area.

Day 1, Monday: Your host family will accompany you to the project site on your first day of interning, where you will receive additional project orientation. After completing this, you will begin your internship tasks, which will depend on your level of experience, education and Spanish language skills.

Days 2-5, Tuesday-Friday: Interns will work for four to six hours each day. Daily, one-hour Spanish language classes are arranged around the working schedule.

Days 6-7, Saturday-Sunday: Weekends are free for relaxing or exploring.

Remaining Weeks: The remaining weeks will follow the schedule of interning Monday-Friday and having Saturday-Sunday free. Departure is on a Saturday.

 

Location icon Location of the Project: Antigua, Guatemala

Project length Project length: Min 4 weeks – Max 12 weeks

Arrival Airport Arrival Airport: La Aurora International Airport (GUA)

Volunteer Work Volunteer Work: Patient care, clinic work

Age Age: Minimum age of 18

Important Note Important Note: Participants are required to bring their own basic medical supplies, including a white coat, scrubs, disposable latex gloves, antibacterial soap or sanitizer, a stethoscope, and a blood pressure cuff.

 

What’s Included

Accommodations Accommodations: Private room in a homestay

Food Food: Breakfast and dinner are provided each day

Airport Transfers Airport Transfers: Airport pickup is provided on arrival day

Orientation Orientation: Interns’ experience, education and Spanish level will be evaluated before the internship begins in order to determine exact tasks.

Support Support: Comprehensive and professional pre-departure travel guidance, 24/7 GoEco emergency hotline, experienced local field team.

 

What’s not Included

Flights, visas (if required), travel health insurance. lunches, daily transportation (about $5 USD per day), personal expenses

Guatemala is the northernmost Central American country, right below Mexico. This internship takes place in Guatemala’s southern city of Antigua, which served as the capital of the Kingdom of Guatemala from the 17th until the 19th century. Today it is a beautiful city surrounded by volcanoes and nestled in the highlands. It is most well-known for its famous architectural structures and ruins, such as the Santa Catalina arch and San Francisco church; the city itself has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

 

Interns in this program will have the unique opportunity to assist Guatemalan health care service providers, from local hospitals and clinics to assisted living facilities. This internship provides interns with hands-on experience while they expand their skills in diagnosis, intervention and evaluation. In addition to these medical skills, interns will also be enhancing their Spanish language skills through daily one-on-one lessons and regular practice throughout the work day.

Some of your tasks may include:

  • Assisting with physical examinations
  • Taking patient’s vital signs, measuring height and weight
  • Organizing files
  • Assisting with family planning services
  • Assisting with sutures, suture removals and injections
  • Assisting with patient consultations and prescriptions
  • Interpreting laboratory tests

 

Medical professionals are typically placed at a national clinic for primary and emergency care, or in an assisted living facility. Due to medical laws, professional interns are not allowed to practice fully and freely, however your help can greatly benefit the projects still.

Medical professionals can expect to do the following in their placement:
– Work alongside a nurse, doctor, therapist, or other medical professional with consultations
– Do triage, clean wounds, draw blood samples, give sutures and injections
– Provide general care and companionship to patients (talking, feeding, bathing)
– Distribute or sort medicine, teach patients about their medicine
– Clean or prepare materials and equipment, including changing beds
– Assist with administrative work and filing, recording patient data

Please note: Specific tasks will depend on your level of experience, education and Spanish language skills. Physical therapy and dental placements may or may not be available at any given time. For the two-week and four-week programs, a one-hour presentation or 10-20 page paper is required upon completion. For the eight-week program, both a one-hour presentation and paper are required. Weekly journals are also required.

Typical Schedule: Interns will work Monday-Friday, typically 4-6 hours/day, Monday-Friday and join one hour of Spanish class. Weekends are free for interns to spend as they wish.

 

Internet icon Internet: Internet is available at the institute in Antigua.

Laundry icon Laundry: Laundry facilities may or not be available at your host family, but there are laundromats in Antigua.

Accommodations icon Accommodations: Interns will stay in private rooms with a host family in Antigua. Host families may live up to one hour from the intern site. Interns should be prepared to spend about $5 USD per day on public transportation.

Food icon Food: Breakfast and dinner are provided each day by the host family. Interns will be responsible for arranging their own lunches.

 

Please take note of this project’s minimum requirements:

  • Strong, Intermediate level of Spanish
  • Short interview to evaluate Spanish level
  • At least 18 years of age
  • Pre-med, medical, and nursing program students; alternatively licensed medical professionals
  • Copies of training and credentials
  • Proof of medical education, training, certifications, and licenses
  • CV/ resume
  • Police clearance
  • Internship questionnaire
  • Final project required upon completion of placement
  • Able to be creative with limited resources
  • Hard working

During free time, volunteers may choose to take part in a variety of free activities sponsored by the local team, including salsa classes, cooking lessons, a language and cultural exchange program and more! For additional fees, volunteers can choose to travel and the area on their own. A few recommendations are listed below.

Surf School – Five-day surf school at the beautiful Manuel Antonio beach

Scuba Diving Certification – Four-day PADI diving certification

Mini Adventure—Catch the best highlights of Guatemala on this week-long tour including hiking Pacaya Volcano, visiting the jungle ruins of Tikal, engaging in beach activities and more!

ChocoMuseo
Every intern should visit the chocolate museum while in Antigua! Guatemala is well-known for its Mayan chocolate, and here interns will have the chance to learn how chocolate is made and to sample different chocolate products.

Volcán Pacaya
Hike up Pacaya Volcano for a breathtaking view of the city! It takes approximately an hour and a half to reach the summit.

De la Gente
If you agree that chocolate and coffee go hand-in-hand, then don’t miss the chance to visit a family owned coffee farm after your visit to ChocoMuseo to complete your Guatemalan cultural experience.

Please note that these are available for a fee.

Volunteer Experiences

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