Hands-On Medical Volunteer Experience in Guatemala

Are you a medical student, doctor, nurse, or other medical type of medical professional? Are you looking for opportunities to gain hands on medical experience in the healthcare field? Or are you interested in sharing your medical experience with those from impoverished communities in Guatemala? Then our Guatemala medical camp is a perfect opportunity for you!

  • Gain hands on medical experience working in a stand alone medical camp in Guatemala
  • Share your medical expertise and make a difference
  • A life changing medical volunteer abroad experience starts at $525
  • A highly rated program that has been trusted by thousands of volunteers since 2003

Guatemala is a colorful country with a mix of indigenous culture sprinkled with Spanish influence on a background of Mayan ruins, colonial cities, mountain regions, and active volcanoes. It's a genuinely inviting country.

However, about 50% of the population of Guatemala lives in rural areas where poverty is deeply rooted. About 70% of those who live in the countryside live below the poverty line. Poverty affects everyone in these areas; indigenous communities, families, and young people.

In the rural villages of Guatemala, thousands of people are suffering from malnutrition and subsequent diseases. They are so poor that they cannot afford nutritious and healthy food or treatment for their aliments. In these poor villages, unreasonable death is constant because the government does not have enough healthcare aid programs to assist them. It is urgent and important that programs are put into place to help these impoverished communities.

About the Medical Camp in Guatemala

Global Crossorad medical camp in Guatemala aims to offer basic medical and health care services to these poor villagers. Our medical camp will be based in the rural villages near the city of Antigua or Xela. It will move around the surrounding rural villages and stay in each community for one or two weeks, depending on the needs of individual communities. This stand-alone mobile medical camp provides primary health care services to the poorest and neediest of Guatemalans.

Our medical health camp in Guatemala is run with the help and support of local doctors and medical volunteers like you,. As a medical volunteer, your work will have a direct and lasting impact on the lives of those who come to the camp for care.

While working on the medical project, you will look after the most vulnerable members of the community: the elderly, the orphans, the women, and the disabled who lack primary medical care and basic health care education.

You will diagnose and treat various illnesses and conditions. You will also give them basic health information on many health related issues such as how to stay healthy or how to purify water to prevent cholera outbursts, diarrhea, stomach upsets and other water and fecal-borne diseases. You will have ample hands on medical volunteer experiences as you will be directly involve in the treatment of the local people.

Every Guatemala medical volunteering program and its camp is run and supervised by one or more local doctors. The local doctor will be your team leader and will assist you along the way, provide you with information regarding local health issues, delegate tasks, match the patients with the specialties of each volunteer, give advice, and deal with possible communication issues that may arise.

Skills and Qualifications

The medical volunteer abroad program in Guatemala is open to all medical volunteers, despite age, educational, or professional backgrounds, including medical students. Physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses, midwives, gynecologists, dentists, paramedics, EMTs, physical therapists, nutritionists, and other healthcare workers not listed are welcome to join this project.

Your local team leader will be a local doctor.

A local doctor will run the Guatemala health camp and will act as your team leader during your stay. The local doctor will coordinate the tasks in the camp, provide you with information regarding the local health issues and deficiencies, supervise and guide you throughout this experience.

The local doctor will be your professional point of call and go-to person who will help you during your volunteer program. Your team leader will be a qualified, experienced and very knowledgeable local doctor. Local interpreters and translators might join the team depending on the volunteers and their needs.

A Sample Itinerary (one week)

The daily itinerary for the Guatemala health camp varies depending upon the specific goals of each camp, specific needs of the various communities, interest of the group, local situation, and other factors. Here is the basic outline our medical camp in Guatemala:

Day 1: Orientation and Q&A session about the medical camp

Your Guatemala medical volunteer experience starts with an orientation about the country and the program. On your first day of the program, you will participate in an orientation session at the Global Crossroad's office. The local team leader will explain in detail what will happen during the program, starting with an introduction to the culture, history, geography, politics, and contemporary issues of Guatemala.

After, your team leader will give you information about the medical volunteer work in Guatemala, the camp objectives, location, daily tasks and expectations, and common illnesses. You will also learn about your responsibilities as a volunteer, safety issues, your accommodations, meals, daily transportation, and dos and do nots.

You will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have, clarify any doubts, and review the daily itinerary. This orientation will provide you with everything you need to know in order to be able to care for your patients and make the most of your medical volunteering abroad experience in Guatemala.

If there is enough time, you and or your team will visit the medical camp for the first time and meet the leaders and locals behind the scenes. In some situations, your medical volunteer activities will start from day one.

Day 2-5: Beginning of your experience as a medical volunteer in the medical camp

After breakfast, at 7 am, you will head to the medical camp

8 – 9 am: Set up camp
Once you arrive at camp, you will start getting things ready and setting up to make sure everything is ready to run the camp efficiently before the patients start arriving. The tasks will vary.

9 – 1 pm: Patient check-ups

At 9am, your real medical volunteer abroad experience starts. Local people will arrive at the camp to be cared for. You will be very busy for three to four hours as you are involved in all different treatments and important tasks to keep the health camp running. Putting to good use the medical skills you have acquired and offering them to the local elderly, the women and the children who need it is the most fantastic and rewarding opportunity.

The goal of the medical camp is to provide basic treatment and general advice regarding general and public health to those who seek it. The various diseases the patients suffer from, from eye, ear to skin conditions and injuries are a great opportunity for you to use your expertise, to challenge yourself, and to help those who are suffering get better.

11 am - 11:30 am: 30 minutes break to rest and to refresh.

1 pm: Closing of the medical camp

The medical camp will close around 1 pm. After that, you will go back to the guesthouse where you will have a well deserved meal and rest. In your free time, you can ask for more information about the following day, or you can simply relax and explore the colorful streets of Antigua or Xela. Feel free to contact our local team, if you need any help.

Day 6– 7: Off days

Usually, the medical camp runs only during the week. During the weekend you will have time to explore. You can visit other cities, shop in local markets, meet local people, and see the major tourist attractions of the area. For the last 10 years, we have helped thousands of volunteers to have exciting adventures abroad, in many different ways. We can give you information to assist your independent travels or help you by organizing a short day trip. Let us know what you want to do and we will help you to further enjoy your weekend.

This medical volunteering program in Guatemala starts again on the following next week, if you have signed up for a two-week program or want to extend you stay.

Important notice: The sample itinerary above just gives a general idea about the medical volunteer camp aborad. What you see here is to give you a general idea of how we run the medical camp. Prior to your departure, we will send you a final customized itinerary of your Guatemala medical volunteer trip abroad.

Dates and Prices

Dates

Global Crossroad's medical camp starts on the first and third Monday of each month. However, if you have a small group of more than three volunteers who want to join the program, we can create a customized program to allow your group to start at any date that is more convenient for your group.

Important notice: You can join Global Crossroad's International medical camp individually or in a group. We need a minimum of 3 volunteers to run the camp. Therefore, we request that you invite others to make a small group. Or, if this is not possible, please apply at least 2 or 3 months in advance so we can inform you - at least a month in advance - in case we have to cancel the camp setup due to failing to meet the minimum number of volunteers required.

Fees

Global Crossroad offers one of the most affordable medical volunteer abroad programs. Our cost is extremely affordable. Global Crossroad's international medical camp offers a hands-on medical volunteer experience to volunteers while running the stand alone camp and covering most of the expenses related to the medical camp such as local doctors, nurses, medicine, water, etc.

The Global Crossroad's registration fee is $299.

Weekly fee

One Week - $525
Two weeks - $830

What does the fee cover?

  • Airport pick up and drop off
  • Accommodation
  • Comprehensive travel insurance
  • Food (3 local meals a day)
  • Support & supervision from local doctors and team

What's not included?

  • Airfare
  • Daily transportation
  • Visa
  • Personal expenses
  • $100 donation to buy and distribute free medicines to local people - you can pay it locally.

Housing, Food, and Supervision

During your Guatemala medical volunteering program, you will stay in a guesthouse or with a host family. Usually, volunteers share a bedroom with one same gender volunteer. The house will be spacious and fully equipped with communal areas and a television. It's a perfect place to relax or to spend time meeting other volunteers after a day's work.

Within the communal areas, you will find a kitchen and a shared bathroom with running water and "modern" toilets. The house will be located in a safe and clean neighborhood with Internet cafes, grocery stores, restaurants and access to local transportation.

You will be served Guatemalan food three times per day,. The Guatemalan typical food and diet consists of corn, beans, rice, pork, beef, chicken, cheese, and tortillas, delightful meat stews (caldos), and tasty soups (sopas).

During your stay, our local country coordinator and team will provide you with all the support you need to make sure you have a rewarding and safe medical volunteer abroad opportunity in Guatemala. The local team will pick you up and drop you off at the airport, provide transports to and from the medical camp every day, and help you with other logistical support.

Travel and Extending Your Stay

After your one or two-week medical volunteering program in Guatemala, you can decide to stay longer in the country if you want. There are many options available for you. You can either explore independently, participate in organized tours, or join another one of Global Crossroad's volunteer abroad program such as teaching English or working in an orphanage. We will be happy to help you if you need any assistance.

FAQ: Medical Volunteer Experience in Guatemala

  • Where is the medical camp located?
  • Who will benefit from the camp?
  • Do you charge any fees to local people?
  • How long will my medical volunteering experience last?
  • What kind of tasks will I perform in the medical camp?
  • I am a specialized medical doctor or professional, how can I use my expertise?
  • Do I need to take equipment and supplies to Guatemala?
  • What type of supplies can I bring?