"Had I not attended the Interhealth program in Ecuador I would not be pursuing my study of the Spanish language back home with the purposeful motivation that I have had during this past year.


"I have also been inspired to join our medical school global health council, through which I was elected director of the student-run free clinic.


"Interhealth has left a big impact on my life, and I cannot thank you enough for organizing it."


- Audrey Sharp, medical student participant, University of Tennessee





Programming is organized to maximize flexibility for busy student and resident calendars. Participants elect to take part in one of six modules, each of which places emphases in unique areas.


During the first two weeks the group visits urban and rural health facilities in the Ecuadorian Andes Mountains, and participates in patient care health brigades while studying medical Spanish under the guidance of physician program directors. Weeks 3 and 4 take place in urban Quito, with a focus on intensive language development. In week 5 the group travels to the upper Amazon River basin rainforest to observe operation of health facilities, and participate in rural health brigades. During the sixth week participants work in clinics and hospitals on a more individual basis while continuing language instruction.


The language portion of the program emphasizes medical Spanish vocabulary acquisition and use, and patient interviewing skills development.


The director is a North American physician who remains in Ecuador with participants for the majority of the time of the program.


Week 1: Urban Quito and Rural Mountain Imbabura Region


* Move in with Quito host families, general orientation

* International health conferences

* Medical Spanish: getting started

* Travel to Imbabura region, lodging in small indigenous community

* Group tour of mountain communities, overview of health problems

* Visits to local health centers and hospital

* Patient care in group rural community health brigades

* Individual participation with indigenous health practitioners

* Visit to regional indigenous marketplace


 Week 2: Rural Imbabura Region and Return to Quito


* Patient care in group rural community health brigades

* Individual and group rural indigenous health care activities

* Visits to community health centers

* Medical Spanish classes

* Sweat lodge health activity

* Return to Quito, lodging with host families

* Patient care in urban Quito community health brigades


Week 3: Quito Focus on Language Development


* Morning intensive Spanish language classes, focus on detailed grammar and vocabulary development

* Afternoon health resource activities


Week 4: Quito Special Programming in Urban Marketplaces


*Morning participation in group education and development programs with children of urban marketplace workers

* Afternoon intensive Spanish language classes


Week 5: Rural Tropical Rainforest


* Travel to rainforest, lodging in rainforest environmental hotel

* Overview of healthcare provision in a rainforest setting

* Patient care in group rural community health brigades

* Observation of healthcare activities in rainforest health center

* Visits with indigenous rainforest health practitioners

* Guided observation of rainforest medicinal plant uses

* Return travel to Quito, rainforest health debriefing


Week 6: Quito Patient Care and Continuing Language Development


* Individual clinic/hospital healthcare sites

* Patient care in group urban medical brigades

* Afternoon medical Spanish classes

* Group visits to medical school and historical medical museum

* Final medical Spanish learning exercises

* Farewell celebration

* Program concludes


Interhealth South America

30404 Holly Drive USF

Tampa, Florida 33620





2021 Calendar


The current calendar is contingent upon developments in personal safety during the pandemic


* Module 1, June 12-26 (weeks 1-2)


* Module 2, June 12-July 3 (weeks 1-3)


* Module 3, June 12-July 10 (weeks 1-4)


* Module 4, June 12-July 17 (weeks 1-5)


* Module 5, June 12-July 24 (weeks 1-6)


* Module 6, July 3-24 (weeks 4-6)