At a glance
- Learn from professional doctors and nurses at a hospital, health centre, private clinic, or children’s rehabilitation centre.
- Doctors will walk you through their diagnoses, and talk about the methods they use to treat their patients as you shadow them on their rounds.
- You’ll also get practical experience conducting health checks and delivering educational talks in local communities during our medical outreach days.
18 or over
You need to speak intermediate Spanish.
Is a medical internship in Peru right for me?
Considering a career in medicine? Interested in gaining clinical experience before or during your medical studies? This international medical internship in Peru is the right move for you.
Overseas medical experience will set your CV apart for all your future applications. Whether you’re a high school student preparing for university, or planning ahead for job applications, this internship will give your CV that extra edge.
The internship runs for a minimum of four weeks, but you can choose to intern for longer to accumulate as many hours of work experience as you would like.
Please note that you must speak an intermediate level of Spanish to join this internship, as not all doctors and supervisors are fluent in English.
What will I do during this medical internship in Peru?
We have a number of medical placements in Peru for you to intern at. You can work in hospitals, healthcare centres, children’s rehabilitation centres, or private health clinics. The exact work you do will depend on where you're placed, but here are the kind of things you could get up to:
- Observe doctors during their work in hospital, consulting, treating, and more
- Rotate between departments like general medicine, gynecology & pharmacy
- Provide basic healthcare and info to underprivileged communities on outreaches
- Treat children with special needs under the guidance of professionals
Your work will be split in three main areas:
Shadow doctors, nurses, and other medical staff during their day-to-day activities. Listen and learn as doctors diagnose patients and observe the way they treat them. You’ll also see nurses cleaning wounds, doing stitching, and giving injections.
Rotating between hospital departments
We give you the opportunity to watch procedures within a number of departments. Broaden your knowledge by spending time in departments like general medicine, gynaecology, obstetrics, and pharmacy. If you work at the children’s rehabilitation centre, you will gain experience in paediatric treatment as well.
Outreach work takes place separately from your normal hospital work. You’ll visit underprivileged communities with a supervisor, to provide basic healthcare and educational information to those who cannot access these services otherwise. You’ll raise awareness of disease and preventative measures, so the communities you visit can lead healthier lives.
Types of placements on the Medical Internship in Peru
During your medical internship in Peru, you can get experience in various hospital departments. The longer you stay, the more departments you see. This is a great way to explore specialisations and decide which one you want to pursue in your medical career.
You can choose to spend time in these departments:
- General Medicine
If you’re interested in a specific department, please feel free to contact us and we can help advise you.
Where you will work on the Medical Internship in Peru?
You'll be based in the bustling city of Cusco. This was once the capital of the ancient Incan Empire and you'll see countless reminders of this as you walk through the city today.
In Cusco you'll find busy hospitals and medical clinics. Peru has huge problems with both infectious and non-communicable diseases. This means that there will be plenty of practical cases for you to observe and learn from.
What your typical day will be like
A typical day in Peru will start with you travelling to work bright and early. Once there, your role will be mainly observational, so you will spend the majority of your time watching skilled doctors and medical staff at work.
See how staff clean wounds, put in stitches, give injections, treat children at the rehabilitation centre, and many other practical tasks. Doctors will happily share their knowledge and advice, and welcome any questions you might have.
Work hours vary depending on where you are placed. At the hospital and healthcare centre, mornings are generally busier than afternoons. Your afternoons are therefore likely to be spent doing more administrative tasks and helping with bedside care.
At the private clinic, you will arrive at 8am, accompany doctors while they visit patients from 8:30am-11:00am, and then help doctors and nurses with patient care from 11:00am-1:00pm.
You will have less contact with doctors if you work at the children’s rehabilitation centre. If you choose this medical internship placement, you will spend afternoons at various child care facilities around the city to assist with educational and developmental work.
During your weekends you can explore the amazing city of Cusco, or venture out into the surrounding landscapes to marvel at the natural beauty, observing llamas in their natural habitat.
What are the aims and impact of the medical internship in Peru?
Peru currently suffers from a double burden of disease: infectious disease remains rife in poorer communities, with respiratory diseases still being one of the leading causes of death in Peru. That being said, non-communicable diseases are also on the rise and malnutrition amongst babies and children remains a serious issue.
Through our outreach programme, we aim to provide basic healthcare to some of these vulnerable groups as well as raise awareness about some of the more pressing health issues facing the country.
We have committed to four goals, as outlined in our Medical Management Plan:
- Encourage an understanding of medical practices and promote an exchange of medical knowledge
- Improve the quality of healthcare provided to patients
- Improve access to basic healthcare to disadvantaged groups
- Improve hygiene standards
Gain medical work experience in Peru while helping us achieve these long-term goals.
Professional volunteers and medical practicums for students
This project is also ideally suited to professionals interested in using their skills to help, as well as university medical and healthcare practicum students.
As a professional, you can be sure we'll match your training and expertise to the placement where you're needed most. With your support, we can make an even bigger impact on the local communities we work with.
If you're a practicum student, we'll organize a practicum placement where you can learn as much as possible. We want you gain the knowledge and skills that will begin to shape your professional career.
Contact us so we can help organize a specific placement for you.
We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.
Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.
Measuring our impact
Our projects work towards clear long-term goals, with specific annual objectives. Every volunteer and intern we send to these projects helps us work towards these goals, no matter how long they spend on our projects.
Every year we take a step back and look at how much progress we've made towards these goals. We put together a Global Impact Report, which documents our achievements. Find out more about the impact our global community of volunteers, interns and staff make, and read the latest report.
Food and accommodation
You'll stay with a host family in Cusco. They will welcome you into their home, eager to share their customs and have you teach them about your own culture. We believe that this is the best way to immerse yourself in the culture of Peru and have a truly unique experience.
We will always try to let you live alongside at least one other Projects Abroad volunteer or intern at the same host family. Your room will be modest, but comfortable, clean, and safe.
Your programme fee includes three meals a day.
Find out more about our accommodation.
Leisure activities and free time
Peru is a vibrant country with a mix of activities for every kind of volunteer. Whether you’re into arts, culture, history, or nature, there’s sure to be something for you!
One of the biggest attractions of Peru is the Inca history. There are awe-inspiring archaeological sites like Coricancha, Tambomachay, and of course, Machu Picchu.
Over a weekend, you can take a trip to the village of Pisac, where you can browse bright, eye-catching textile markets. Don’t miss out on seeing the llamas and alpacas too!
There are also lively restaurants, the perfect place to spend an evening relaxing and enjoying local cuisine, like ceviche.
We run a variety of projects in Peru so you’ll likely meet many other volunteers on your trip. It’s the perfect opportunity to connect and travel as a group. However, you’re welcome to travel independently if you prefer.
Safety and staff support
Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.
Find out more about safety and backup.
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