Top 15 Medical Volunteer Opportunities In 2022 For Students

One great way to give back to society is through volunteer programs. As a recent graduate from the healthcare field, current student, or aspiring nurse or doctor, there are many people who need your help, will you answer the call?

Medical Volunteering is an amazing opportunity for you to gain hands-on medical experience while providing much-needed care to people without proper access to healthcare.

In this article, we will link you with the top 15 medical volunteer opportunities, their locations, and durations. Don’t trivialize these opportunities because they will benefit you a lot.

There are several countries around the world with a shortage of medical facilities and people living in rural areas often suffer from inadequate treatment.

According to WHO, the common causes of death are congenital anomalies, prematurity, injuries, pneumonia, birth asphyxia, neonatal sepsis, diarrhea, and HIV/AIDS and people living in rural areas often have to face the problem of insufficient care and treatment.

Serving as a medical volunteer will be a great opportunity to understand how the medical system works and also offer your help in making a difference in the lives of the people.

Why Medical Volunteer Program?

Below are significant reasons why you should participate in s medical volunteer program.

  • Fulfill your passion for medical work and gain valuable experience while on a lifechanging adventure
  • Experience the feeling of saving lives and providing much-needed care to those who would not get it without you
  • Offer a teaching experience for medical students while also supplying a much-needed volunteer labor force

Who is Eligible For the Medical Volunteer Program?

To qualify to participate in any medical volunteer program, you must be at least 18 years old, with a medical education background. Pre-Medical, Medical, and Nursing students, as well as Medical Professionals, are welcome to join. Participants with other qualifications in the medical field such as CAN, EMT can also join the program.

List of Top Medical Volunteer Opportunities For Students

Here is the list of top medical volunteer programs for Students and graduates.

  • Medical Volunteering Program in Tanzania
  • Medical Volunteering Program in Peru
  • Health Volunteering Program in South Africa
  • Medical Volunteering Program in Costa Rica
  • Medical Volunteering Program in Cambodia
  • Health Volunteer Programs in Ecuador
  • Health Volunteer Programs in Bali
  • Medical Volunteer Program in Thailand
  • Medical Volunteering Opportunities in Ghana
  • Health Volunteering Opportunities in Uganda
  • Medical Volunteering Opportunities in Kenya
  • Medical Volunteering Opportunities in The Philippines
  • Medical & Nursing Program in Sri Lanka
  • Medical Volunteer Opportunities in Vietnam
  • Health Volunteer Opportunity in St. Lucia

#15. Medical Volunteering Program in Tanzania

Location: Arusha and Zanzibar
Duration:
Minimum 1 week – maximum of 24 weeks (Arusha) and a maximum of 12 weeks (Zanzibar)

In Tanzania, there’s still a huge section of the population living in the rural areas who don’t get adequate facilities. The healthcare scenario in the country isn’t as improved and advanced as compared to the West.

Tanzanians still practice early marriages and the case of teen pregnancy can be found in abundance. The healthcare system of Zanzibar is not very strong and often faces infrastructural and administrative challenges.

Medical Volunteers who choose to travel to Tanzania either work at the health care centers, medical clinics, and dispensaries in and around Arusha or in the hospitals of Zanzibar where the staff is mostly inadequate.

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As a volunteer, you would work with professionals and assist them whenever needed. Depending on your skills, your roles will be suturing wounds, giving vaccinations, etc.

In case you are working in Zanzibar, you can also choose your preferred department as a maternity ward, dental department, eye clinic, physiotherapy, etc.

#14. Medical Volunteering Program in Peru

Location: Cusco
Duration:
Minimum 2 weeks – maximum of 24 weeks

Peru is a developing nation with a considerable amount of underprivileged population. The country still suffers from certain drawbacks when it comes to the healthcare scenario.

Your major duty as a volunteer will be to assist the professional doctor-in-charge, shadowing & assisting in different medical procedures. You’ll get to work at the health care centers and clinics to provide care and support to the natives.

Your role will be dependent on your medical experience and Spanish language skills; you may be asked to assist with various procedures such as suturing wounds, giving vaccinations, helping with taking vital signs of patients, being involved in the daily procedures of medical centers, observing or directly providing various sorts of assistance to existing doctors and nurses.

To qualify for this program, you must be at least 18 years old, with a medical education background. Additionally, Pre-Medical, Medical, and Nursing students, Medical Professionals, as well as Participants with other qualifications in the medical field such as CAN, EMT can also take part in the program.

#13. Health Volunteering Program in South Africa

Location: Cape Town
Duration:
Minimum 2 weeks – maximum of 24 weeks

Although South Africa has both private and public healthcare systems, the public system serves the vast majority of the population but it’s not up to the standard that is why there is a need for medical volunteers.

Being a volunteer for the medical program in South Africa means that you’ll be mostly working in healthcare clinics and centers located in Cape Town as well as suburban community areas. These clinics mostly cater to the poorer section of the society who in general can’t afford private medical care.

As a volunteer, you’ll also take up the responsibility of offering awareness and support programs including HIV/AIDS awareness, special childcare and healthy living (nutrition & diet) as well as day-to-day medical care.

#12. Medical Volunteering Program in Costa Rica

Location: San Jose
Duration:
Minimum 1 week – maximum of 24 weeks

Costa Rica is one of the developing countries with immensely improved health care system. According to the UN, Costa Rica’s public health system ranks within the top 20 in the world and number 1 in Latin America.

If you choose Costa Rica as a destination for your medical volunteer program, then you’ll be working with small private and semi-private clinics and pharmacies alongside other doctors and nurses. You’ll be assisting medical professionals. Your major role will be to carry out basic functioning like checking blood pressure, temperature, weight, etc. You can also conduct healthcare campaigns in the local communities, spreading awareness.

#11. Medical Volunteering Program in Cambodia

Location: Phnom Penh
Duration:
 Minimum 2 week – maximum of 24 weeks

The medical & healthcare scenario in Cambodia is not adequate and most rural area dwellers are deprived of proper facilities.
Being a volunteer for this project depending on your knowlege and experience, you will be placed at local city hospitals and clinics in Phnom Penh, where professional doctors and nurses will be guiding you at every step.

Your role basically involves suturing wounds, giving vaccinations, etc. You will also need to be actively involved in the daily procedures of the hospital, taking rounds of the wards, maintaining files, and doing routine patient check-ups like measure blood pressure, check fever, etc.

#10. Health Volunteer Programs in Ecuador

Location: Quito
Duration:
1 week to 12 weeks

Ecuador has not had any real health sector reform in terms of sustained, in-depth changes in the structure of the sector.

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As a volunteer in this program, you will be based in governmental hospitals assisting doctors and other medical staff. Your duty will be to teach local residents about healthy eating, food safety, and proper nutrition, all while receiving mentorship and ongoing training.

The Medical Volunteering Program is ideal for med and pre-med students, as well as medical professionals of all disciplines.

#9. Health Volunteer Programs in Bali

Location: Ubud
Duration:
1 to 12 weeks

Participating in a medical volunteer program in Bali means that, you’ll:

  • Work alongside qualified healthcare practitioners
  • Establish healthy diet and lifestyle campaigns
  • Teach on the importance of healthy nutrition, personal hygiene, and exercise

Additionally, as a volunteer, you’ll be actively teaching the importance of basic hygiene and general health. Topics can include brushing teeth correctly, washing hands, general body cleanliness, and nutrition.

If you’re interested in health education will have the freedom to design their own lessons on hygiene, nutrition, and general health for local elementary school students. Credentialed doctors are welcomed to plan and implement health campaigns and local clinics. Due to limited resources, volunteers wishing to engage in patient care must bring their own equipment.

#8. Medical Volunteer Program in Thailand

Location: Surin
Duration:
Minimum 1 week – maximum of 24 weeks

Medical volunteer opportunities are available for students in Surin: a town in the northeastern part of Thailand as the healthcare scenario there isn’t as developed as that in Bangkok.

The Program in Surin is undoubtedly one of the most popular and preferred choices, as the volunteers are always guided by a member of the local Thai Health Authority and there’s immense scope to learn.

As a Volunteer, you’ll be working in rural communities, helping the local professionals treat the patients. In addition to working in the local communities, you will also do home visits for health check-ups.

Being a part of this unique medical volunteering opportunity in Thailand will be a great opportunity for you to explore the country differently.

#7. Medical Volunteering Opportunities in Ghana

Location: Tamale
Duration: Minimum 1 week – maximum of 24 weeks

In Ghana, the healthcare scenario varies across the urban and rural areas. The urban centers are well served but they are often expensive and unaffordable for the majority of the population.

Rural areas often have no modern health care. Patients in these areas either rely on traditional African medicine or travel great distances for health care.

Being a volunteer for the Medical Healthcare program in Ghana, you will work alongside the doctors, nurses, and local staff in public hospitals and community clinics.

Your task as a volunteer will be dependent on your qualifications, experience, and knowledge. Qualified medical volunteers work in the areas of maternal health, mental health, surgery, laboratories, counseling, and testing.

#6. Health Volunteering Opportunities in Uganda

Location: Kampala Region
Duration:
Minimum 1 week – maximum of 18 weeks

Uganda is one of the developing countries in Africa with limited healthcare professionals and resources. According to the WHO, the leading causes of death in Uganda include communicable diseases such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, respiratory tract infections, and diarrheal disease.

Medical volunteers in this area are placed in a health care center that has over 140 beds and offers opportunities in Radiology, Dental, Pediatric, Surgery, Maternity, OPD, and other departments.

Your role will be based on your experience and skills. You will work between 4-6 hours a day and can be extended in case there is an emergency. On the weekends, there might be community healthcare camps as well, which you’ll get to attend.

#5. Medical Volunteering Opportunities in Kenya

Location: Nairobi
Duration: Minimum 1 week – maximum of 24 weeks

In Kenya, a lot of people still live in underprivileged conditions in the slum areas around the cities, and they are mostly deprived of proper health care which leads to widespread diseases.

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According to data, the 2010 maternal mortality rate per 100,000 births for Kenya is 530. This means that there are huge opportunities for medical volunteers.

Volunteers work in medical clinics, dispensaries, and hospitals in and around the city of Nairobi. Most of these clinics are understaffed, hence, your assistance will make a significant difference to the entire scenario. You’ll assist the professionals to carry out daily tasks as per your experience and knowledge.

#4. Medical Volunteering Opportunities in The Philippines

Location: Tacloban
Duration: Minimum 4 weeks – maximum of 24 weeks

Medical volunteers in the Philipines work in under-funded clinics based in the rural areas outside Tacloban City. You will assist the clinic staff and doctors with regular health care activities. Additionally, you can also conduct healthcare camps, awareness camps, vaccination camps, etc.

Volunteers often get involved with other public health projects, such as the Annual Medical Mission or Annual Medical Check-up for the entire rural population. In a span of at least 4 weeks, you’ll get to contribute effectively as a medical volunteer and make a difference in the lives of the people.

#3. Medical & Nursing Program in Sri Lanka

Location: Karapitiya & Galle
Duration: Minimum 1 Week – Maximum of 24 weeks

Sri Lanka is another developing nation in Southeast Asia. Unlike other underdeveloped countries, Sri Lanka offers free healthcare to all its citizens. As such, the public sector here is very well developed and much larger than the private sector.

If you choose to work in the public sector, you’ll have access to a larger and wider network of medical professionals, range and volume of patients, and exposures to a comprehensive set of wards and special units that cannot come close to being matched in the private sector.

#2. Medical Volunteer Opportunities in Vietnam

Location: Karapitiya & Galle
Duration: Minimum 1 Week – Maximum of 24 weeks

The Medical Volunteer Program in Hanoi is designed for pre-med, medical, and nursing students to enable them to work at the Centre of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation of the Disabled.

As a volunteer for this program, you’ll be assisting doctors and nurses in providing rehabilitation exercises and therapy treatment for children, join in different therapy rooms and work more directly with children, shadowing/observing the Medical and Nursing staff in daily tasks, and doing basic assisting work, etc.

Only students in their 3rd and 4th year, having relevant professional experience & knowledge can assist in the surgeries. But nevertheless, being around the doctors will be an incredible learning opportunity for you.

#1.  Health Volunteer Opportunity in St. Lucia

Location: St. Lucia
Duration: Minimum 1 Week – Maximum of 24 weeks

St. Lucia is an Eastern Caribbean island nation. As a volunteer at St. Lucia, your major role will be to provide infant support, help with early childhood education, teach health and hygiene lessons. You can also take part in food, diet, and nutrition project.

Depending upon your level of experience and your willingness to learn, you can:

  • Provide nutrition education and teach healthy meal preparation in schools, clinics, and community centers
  • Help to construct rainwater catchment systems, and build fuel-efficient stoves
  • Take part in a reforestation effort and plant trees

Conclusion

Volunteer programs generally focus on underserved and/or rural populations, who don’t have easy access to healthcare. By being part of a medical volunteer opportunity, you will not only help the cause of improved health but also learn valuable skills such as teamwork and how to work efficiently with limited resources. Know that your efforts will be greatly appreciated.

Reference

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