Nutrition and Rural Medicine in Latin America

Sites: INTL
Director(s): Nicte Mejia
Prerequisites: HMS Principal Clinical Experience (Core Clinical Clerkships) or equivalent. ME518M.41a and/or permission of Course Director.
Offered: Two month segment abroad preceded by one month of intensive Spanish instruction and orientation seminars (ME518M.41a)
Location: INTL - Institution outside of the US (41)
Open to Exclerks: No (HMS only)
Description: Students may add themselves to the waiting list for this course during add/drop periods but not during lottery periods. This course acquaints students with medical care in rural and peri-urban areas of Latin America. First hand experience in primary health care delivery facilitates the understanding of how health care and access to health care are influenced by political, economic, cultural and agricultural factors. Students will become familiar with Latin American culture and will have an opportunity to refine their clinical interviewing skills in the Spanish language thus preparing them to care for Latinos in the United States. Students participate in two-month clerkships in Bolivia, Colombia, Chile, Costa Rica, Guatemala or Paraguay. In Bolivia, Costa Rica, Paraguay and Chile, students will be assigned to district hospitals or health centers where they participate full time in outpatient and inpatient care. In Guatemala, students are assigned to a maternal and child health care center and to rural health posts operated by the Francisco Marroquin Medical School. In all settings, students work as members of a health team, in most cases together with local senior medical students, under the supervision of medical officers of the host institutions. Students work full time at their assigned field sites. Spanish is used in all communications with patients, colleagues and preceptors. Evaluation: P/F performance and written report. Prerequisites: ME518M.41a and/or permission of Course Director. Ability to take a medical history in Spanish is required. Students may apply to SMO for a stipend to cover air fare.
Incorporation of Basic Science Content and Evidence-Based Medicine:
Students are expected to apply their understanding of patho-physiology and their skills in performing a physical examination to make clinical decisions in the field
Grade Criteria:
Satisfactory/ Unsatisfactory
Successful completion of the 4-8 week rotation
Students that fail to perform or opt to leave the rotation before completion of 4-8 week commitment. Only in extraordinary circumstances will partial credit be awarded for completion of a less weeks than planned.