For the purposes of our program, we describe senior medical students as students in their 3rd and 4th years in the United States and Canada; and 4th, 5th, and 6th year medical students in 5 or 6-year medical programs.
Whether you call them medical electives, clinical rotations or clerkships, we ensure that medical students have a safe, structured and supervised healthcare internship abroad to learn under supervision of qualified healthcare professionals in the hospitals we partner with. Its an opportunity to gain practical experience either as a requirement for the medical degree or to enhance essential skills as a medic in training.
The clinical rotations and ward work are organized in a manner that most benefits the student both in attaining practical experience and integrating knowledge in an approach that serves to benefit patient care and help the student to progress in his/her field. Healthcare delivery in developing countries is greately under resourced thus chances are you will find the conditions very different from what you are used to, thus providing an opportunity that really tests your critical thinking, abilities and your emotions.
In some cases you will find yourself returning to basics including diagnosing and treating conditions without the benefits of laboratory services or medical equipment you have back home. Yet in others you may find that the approach to managing and treating familiar illnesses may well differ from what you’ve been taught at home thus challenging some of the ideas you may have previously held. Patients present themselves with conditions far advanced than what you see back home sometimes due to lack of access to health facilties early enough, you will see conditions that are rarely seen back home, some that you have only read in books such as tropical diseases. The benefit of our medical rotations abroad is that you develop new skills while also increasing your understanding of diseases progression.
The experience includes firsthand practical work in a developing country for medical students under supervision where they will be involved in diagnosing and treating conditions without the benefits of advanced medical equipment back home. Public hospitals in developing countries are faced with shortage of healthcare professionals while at the same time face heavy patient loads thus presents students with real opportunities to develop new skills during their clinical rotations abroad. In addition due to lack of funds, limited access to heath facilities because of distance, and lack of proper education, patients put off treatment presenting themselves to hospitals with diseases or pathologies that have advanced to critical stages.
Medical students will encounter opportunities to treat tropical diseases such as malaria, which is a great chance to expand medical knowledge. All these scenarios during students international rotations abroad will teach them new skills and enhance your understanding of diseases progression while testing your skills.
All our medical internship applicants are contacted to confirm the specific department they would like to rotate in so that they get the opportunity in their area of interest.
Students are directed by the supervising doctors and other mentors to enable them draw an understanding of diverse aspects relating to the care of the patients e.g.
· Relevant history taking in various body systems
· Physical examination
· Relevant laboratory investigations and their interpretation
· Arriving at pertinent diagnoses and appropriate treatment measures
· Various procedures in the clinical medicine and pediatric rotations may be viewed or carried out, under supervision and may include: administration of various types of injections, lumbar punctures, insertion of intravenous cannulae, nasogastric intubation, lymph node biopsies e.t.c
· The student may be allowed to observe and assist in various general and orthopedic surgeries, under supervision
· Within the obstetric and gynecology department, the student is required to take relevant history, carry out physical examination and formulate a pertinent diagnosis and management scheme. He/she may be permitted to view or assist in various procedures, under supervision. These may include: Normal deliveries, Caesarean sections, Tubal ligations and several others.
In any given rotation abroad, a proactive liaison with the hospital staff and senior consultants is recommended
Students have the opportunity of selecting various hospitals that host Elective Africa programs in our various destinations. Visit our destinations page to read more about each at http://electiveafrica.com/destinations/kenya.
We organise for the students safari to parks in either Kenya or Tanzania, including a hike to Mt. Kilimanjaro. See the safari link at http://electiveafrica.com/safaris and our facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/electiveafrica.
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